Adam Wainwright will start St. Louis Cardinals’ wild card game
Adam Wainwright will start the St. Louis Cardinals’ wild card game that is likely to come against the Los Angeles Dodgers.
It has been obvious for the entire second half of the season. If the St. Louis Cardinals made the wild card game, Adam Wainwright would start in the National League wild card game.
On Wednesday, Cardinals manager Mike Shildt made it official: Wainwright will start the wild card game that is increasingly likely to come against the Dodgers, with ace Max Scherzer set to take the mound in Los Angeles.
It will start the postseason off with a bang. In his age-40 season, Wainwright has established himself as the team’s unquestioned ace. He has thrown 206.1 innings, among the most in the NL, and has a 3.05 ERA which is his lowest since 2015. His three complete games are his most since 2014. Part of that is a credit to the Cardinals’ elite defense, but his FIP (3.66) indicates that he remains a highly effective pitcher.
They will need Wainwright to be at his best, of course, because Scherzer is the best pitcher in baseball. He has a 1.98 ERA in 11 starts with the Dodgers, thrusting himself into the thick of the NL Cy Young conversation, but something to watch for: he is coming off a clunker against the San Diego Padres, allowing seven runs in 3.1 innings. He is beatable. But when the lights are the brightest and the moments are the biggest, Scherzer is at his best.
It should be the matchup of the ages and the Cardinals couldn’t be going into it any hotter. They have won 18 of 19 games. Nolan Arenado, Paul Goldschmidt, Tyler O’Neill, Dylan Carlson and Harrison Bader are playing their best baseball. The defense remains elite. There is a lot of good juju surrounding this team and despite the Dodgers winning over 100+ games and having the most talented roster in baseball, there is a legitimate chance the Cardinals advance to the NLDS.
It starts with Wainwright — and with him on the mound, anything is possible. Get ready.