Waino Goes All The Way, Again
Simply a superlative performance by St Louis Cardinals starter Adam Wainwright on the day he was named to his first All-Star roster. Wainwright only needed 99 pitches to dispatch the Brewers on Independence Day, and provided all the fireworks needed with a bases-loaded 3-run double in third inning. Marred only by a solo shot by fellow All-Star Corey Hart after being staked to a 6-run lead, Wainwright cruised to his 4th complete game of the year.
And 4 complete games already this year had me raise a question on twitter about who’s had the most Cardinal CG’s since John Tudor’s outstanding 1985 season. My twitter friend Bob Netherton had an answer for me. And what an answer! On his Throatwarbler’s Blog, Bob broke down the Cardinals team leaders in complete games.
This got me thinking of a new question. Tony LaRussa is generally considered the manager most responsible for situational relief pitching and the constant parade of RP we now see in the latter innings of games. So how does Wainwright’s first half compare with other SP’s LaRussa has managed in his long career?
Bob broke down the Cardinals CG history since 1985. TLR didn’t truly become infamous for his hook until he started managing the Oakland Athletics. 1987 was his first full season as the A’s skipper, so that makes a good comparison with Bob’s research.
1987 8- Dave Stewart
1988 14- Dave Stewart (Bob Welch was 2nd on the club with only 4)
1989 8- Dave Stewart
1990 11- Dave Stewart (Mike Moore was 2nd with 3)
1991 7- Bob Welch
1992 4- Ron Darling
1993 5- Bobby Witt (Ron Darling had 3, no other CG’s)
1994* 5- Bobby Witt
1995** 2- Steve Ontiveros & Todd Stottlemyre
1996 5- Todd Stottlemyre
1997 3- Matt Morris
1998 2- Matt Morris
1999 2- Darren Oliver & Jose Jimenez
2000 5- Darryl Kile (R.I.P)
2001 3- Woody Williams
2002 1- Matt Morris/W. Williams/Andy Benes/Chuck Finley
2003 5- Matt Morris
2004 3- Matt Morris
2005 7- Chris Carpenter Won Cy Young Award
2006 5- Chris Carpenter
2007 1- Braden Looper & Anthony Reyes
2008 1- Adam Wainwright & Braden Looper
2009 3- Chris Carpenter & Joel Pineiro
2010 4- Adam Wainwright (so far)
* 114 games due to strike
** 144 games due to firing
It’s apparent that CG’s on LaRussa’s teams are tough to come by. But with 4 in the first half of the season, Wainwright is on pace to match the most complete games for a TLR managed club since the day of that old war-horse of the A’s – Dave Stewart. And that includes Chris Carpenter’s uninjured brilliance with the Birds on the Bat across his chest.
It’s quite apparent the lanky right-hander from Georgia is dead set on collecting this year’s Cy Young Award – Ubaldo Jimenez & Roy Halladay be damned!