Last week, St. Louis Cardinals fans were holding their breaths after their new ace, Sonny Gray left his start against the Washington Nationals and was later diagnosed with a mild hamstring strain.

At the time, it seemed highly unlikely that Gray would be ready for Opening Day on March 28, and that may still be the case.

However, he has been progressing well. He threw a brief bullpen session on Monday that encouraged the Cardinals and today, fans got another positive update on the 34-year-old.

Cardinals beat writer Lynn Worthy discusses Cardinals outfield, Sonny Gray  update

“Sonny Gray (hamstring) recovered well from throwing off the mound Monday,” wrote Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. “He’ll throw a side session, similar to what he would do between starts, on Thursday in Jupiter and depending on how he feels after it, the Cardinals will make a call on game, live batting practice, next outing.”

Last week, Cardinals fans were holding their breaths, but it’s a different story this week.

Sonny Gray's injury wasn't remotely as bad as we thought

Cardinals fans should certainly be pleased with this recent update, as it appears that Gray’s injury wasn’t quite as bad as we initially thought.

Fans were worried because, beyond Gray, the Cardinals rotation doesn’t inspire a whole lot of confidence. Even new additions Lance Lynn and Kyle Gibson are coming off bad 2023 seasons, and it was the rotation that fell apart early in 2023 and played a key role in the Cardinals going 71-91 and finishing in last place in the NL Central.

The true flaw was exposed with the lack of a top-level starting pitcher, something the Cardinals foolishly passed on the prior offseason.

The cracks begin to show after Sonny Gray injury

Now, it looks like Gray may not end up starting the season on the injured list and could still be in line for Opening Day, which is two weeks away.

Gray was second in the Cy Young race last year in the American League, posting a 2.79 ERA with the Minnesota Twins. St. Louis made him their top offseason target and signed him to a three-year, $75 million contract with a club option for 2027.