St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Adam Wainwright made his spring training debut yesterday, logging two hitless innings for the defending World Series champions. Wainwright, who missed the entire 2011 season after undergoing Tommy John Surgery, wasn’t sharp in his first start, but he did show that he hasn’t lost any velocity following last year’s procedure.
Wainwright struck out two and allowed a single walk over his two innings Friday. The right-hander logged 30 pitches, only throwing 14 of them for strikes. Still, Wainwright’s fastball was sitting in the low-90s, an encouraging sign.
In fact, the Cardinals were so encouraged by what they saw that they have decided to adjust Wainwright’s pitching schedule. Rather than taking the usual four days off between appearances, Wainwright will throw following only three days of rest.
While Wainwright’s first start was promising, the bump in the scheduling has more to do with the neck discomfort faced by rotation-mate Chris Carpenter. With it now appearing that Carpenter will not be able to take the ball Opening Day, the Cardinals have adjusted their rotation so that they now anticipate starting the year with a one-two punch of Wainwright and Jaime Garcia.
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