For the fourth straight year, we’re taking some time in that time between the end of the season and the winter meetings to discuss each player that made an appearance on the St. Louis roster this season. Whether they played almost every day or never actually got into a game, they get covered in this series. All stats are exclusively their time in St. Louis. Just think of this as them stopping by Mike Matheny‘s office for a quick evaluation before heading home for the winter.
Player: Adam Wainwright
Season stats: 2-1, 1.61 ERA, 7 games, 28 IP, 25 H, 4 BB, 20 K, 1.036 WHIP, 2.13 FIP, 0.9 bWAR
Hero/Goat: Hero 3
Overall grade: A
Positives: The fact that he made it back to the field after his tore his Achilles at the end of April was truly remarkable….allowed just one run (a homer) in 5.1 postseason innings, working his way back into starting contention if the season had continued….had a 1.44 ERA in 25 starting innings before his injury….had a 5 K/BB ratio, which granted is a function of the lesser innings….spoke out against ED ads completely saturating the postseason airwaves.
Negatives: Was hurt and the Cardinals had to do without him for much of the season….allowed five runs (three earned) to Milwaukee in his second start of the season….basically, his season was short and that was no fun for us fans.
Overview: At least it wasn’t his arm. While none of us would want to lose Adam Wainwright for a significant portion of any season, at least this time there was a good possibility that he could come back without much issue since there was nothing wrong with his pitching arm. Waino proved that with his late-season comeback to the Cardinal bullpen, just another in a long line of quick healing Cardinals. It was very good to see him return to the hill and pitch well enough to get on the postseason roster, especially as others were starting to stumble around that time. It’s just too bad the postseason didn’t go long enough (or the team didn’t start stretching him out early enough) for him to get a postseason start.
Outlook: There’s no reason to think that Waino won’t be fronting the Cardinal rotation again in 2016. Even though he’s starting to get a little older, if he stays healthy, he’s probably going to be in the Cy Young discussion yet again and the Cardinals are going to win a lot of games that have him starting on the mound.