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Duncan to take leave of absence from Cardinals

(UPI/Bill Greenblatt)
St. Louis Cardinals pitching coach Dave Duncan (L), shown here during a July 10 game against the Arizona Diamondbacks, has taken a leave of absence from the team to be with his wife as she recovers from surgery.

The man who's been at the right hand of Tony LaRussa for most of LaRussa's managing career is taking an extended leave of absence from the St. Louis Cardinals.

The team announced today that pitching coach Dave Duncan's wife underwent major surgery on August 21 and will require additional tests and rehabilitation. Duncan asked to stay with his wife during that period. No date's been set for his return.

Here's the rest of the statement from the St. Louis Cardinals:

"The Duncan family asked for privacy during this time. They are optimistic that Jeanine will have a positive recovery and the Cardinals have expressed their full spport to the Duncan family during this difficult time."

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reports that bullpen coach Derek Lilliquist handled some of the in-game pitching coach duties during a weekend series at Wrigley Field.

Rachel is the justice correspondent at St. Louis Public Radio.

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