ST. LOUIS (AP) – Cardinals outfielder Reggie Sanders might miss a month or more because of a broken bone in his right leg.

Sanders was placed on the disabled list Monday, three days after he collided with center fielder Jim Edmonds as they chased a flyball. Tests taken Sunday showed that the 37-year-old left fielder has a hairline fracture of his right fibula that could keep him out longer than a month.

Sanders was second on the Cardinals with 18 home runs, third with 44 RBIs and first with 14 stolen bases in 15 attempts.

It is just the latest injury for the Cardinals, who are fortunate to have a double-digit lead in the NL Central.

St. Louis catcher Yadier Molina is already on the DL, and third baseman Scott Rolen was undergoing strength tests Monday on his surgically repaired left shoulder. Rolen has played well defensively since returning in mid-June, but had been in a 1-for-26 slump before hitting an RBI double off Roger Clemens in a 3-0 victory over Houston on Sunday.

Molina hasn’t played since breaking his left hand when hit by a pitch on July 7, and was placed on the disabled list retroactively Sunday when soreness persisted.

Sanders didn’t play after the collision with Edmonds on Friday night.

The Cardinals purchased the contract of left-handed hitting outfielder John Rodriguez from Triple-A Memphis. Rodriguez, 27, was batting .342 with 17 homers and 47 RBIs in 34 games at Memphis after being acquired from Cleveland in June.

Rodriguez, who has played primarily center field and right field, will be making his major league debut. He spent eight seasons in the New York Yankees organization before signing as a minor league free agent with the Indians before this season.

Entering a four-game series with the Milwaukee Brewers on Monday night, the Cardinals had the largest divisional lead and were a season-best 27 games above .500 at 59-32.

AP-ES-07-18-05 1521EDT

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