In the past, I’ve written that the Cardinals are professionals, and don’t need players with an edge. Even arguing that having an edge shouldn’t be necessary, since these guys are being paid millions to play a game and thus should be playing their best at all times. However, there is an edge to one player this year that I’m admittedly enjoying.
Adam Wainwright is ticked off.
He was, if you haven’t heard, drafted as the 22nd best pitcher on a popular radio show, and even called in to the show to voice his displeasure at being picked so low.
Given that he is our ace, it’s nice to see the edge. Plus given that we’ve lost John Lackey to free agency (boo Cubs!) and Lance Lynn to an injury that cost him the year, we need Waino to perform at a high level this year so seeing that he has extra motivation to do so is nice.
Now, whenever an athlete comes back from an injury that ended their previous season, they obviously have extra motivation – they want to prove their healthy as well as still productive, not far off from where they were when they got hurt.
This feels like it’s more than that. Waino doesn’t just want to prove he’s healthy, he wants to prove he’s still an ace, capable of leading this rotation and putting up the same numbers he has in the past.
Yes, he’s older, his fastball is not quite as fast as it used to be, but he’s also savvier, he knows how to work with the fastball he currently has. Plus he still has his nasty 12-6 curveball, one of the best in the league.
My prediction? He’ll defy those so-called experts and return to being an ace, being far better than the 22nd best pitcher in the game.
Here’s an article from Mark Saxon about the same thing. Guess great (Saxon) and not so great (me) minds think alike. Lol.
As always, thanks for reading.