SportsCrack Blog

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Cardinals lose Adam Wainwright for the season

Spring Training hasn't even technically started their games and already the St. Louis Cardinals have been dealt with two huge blows to the ribs. Or in this case elbow. Cardinal's ace Adam Wainwright has a "significant injury" to his right pitching elbow according to general manager John Mozeliak. The injury happened Monday during a bullpen session and it looks like there is a significant tear in the ligament which means Wainwright, who finished 2nd place for the Cy Young last season with a 20-11 record and a 2.42 ERA, would need Tommy John surgery and be lost for the season if not more.

This is yet another crushing blow to the Cardinals organization. Just last week they found out Albert Pujols would not be resigning before the season started and could lose the future Hall of Famer in free agency after this season. With the cloud already lingering over the organization with the failure to secure a contract for the best player in the game they might have just lost the best pitcher in the National League in Wainwright (with all due respect to Doc Halladay). Not to mention one of their rivals in the Milwaukee Brewers made significant improvements with the additions of starters Zack Greinke and Shaun Marcum to go along with Yovani Gallardo and Randy Wolf in the starting rotation and it is clear that the Cardinals will finish no better than third in the NL Central this season. Division champ Cincinnati is the favorite and the Cubs have a good chance to be much improved with the additions of Matt Garza and Carlos Pena.

So where do the Cardinals go from here? They still have Chris Carpenter as their other ace but we all know his injury issues. They are going to have to rely on Jaime Garcia repeating his stellar rookie numbers and newcomer Jake Westbrook catching some of that Dave Duncan magic to compete in the Central. The season isn't over by any means but it became a hell of a lot harder to see the Cardinals competing for a playoff berth in 2011 without Wainwright.

No comments: