After having Tommy John surgery and missing all of 2011, Adam Wainwright (8-10, 4.24) has not bounced back as well as the Cardinals may have hoped. The ERA isn't terrible, but when a player's last two seasons saw a 2.42 and 2.63 ERA and he has not had an ERA higher than 3.70 in his career, it's a bit disappointing. Part of that is attributable to bad luck--he has a .323 BABIP--and part is from a HR/FB rate that is nearly 5% higher than it was in 2010.
Wainwright's FIP (3.15) and XFIP (3.07) are wonderful and compare favorably to his career averages. They show that he has been pitching better than the results would indicate. Wainwright's 8.56 K/9 is his highest since his rookie season in 2006 while his 2.30 BB/9 is second only to 2010 over his career. Unfortunately for him, his HR/9 is the second highest of his career as well. Of course, that's not saying a whole lot as he has always been great at keeping the ball in the park and his current HR/9 stands at just 0.77.
Wainwright has been getting better results recently. He had a 2.76 ERA in five starts over July. In addition, he has had a quality start in seven of his last nine outings. Wainwright's splits show he does not have much of a preference between facing right and left handed hitters this year. However, he has been much better on the road (.653 opponent OPS) than at home (.788 opponent OPS).
Wainwright throws three pitches primarily: A 90 MPH sinker (36%), an 87 MPH cutter (27%) and a 74 MPH curveball (24%). He has faced five Brewers hitters at least ten times over his career. Here is how they have fared:
For the Brewers, Mark Rogers (0-0, 3.18) will be making his second start of the season. Rogers had not been in the majors since late 2010 before being called up last week to assume a rotation spot following the departure of Zack Greinke. Rogers impressed in his first start, too. Against the Nationals (the team with the second best record in the MLB), Rogers threw 5.2 innings, allowing two earned runs on six hits and a walk. He also struck out seven hitters. Rogers threw 98 pitches, 59 of which were strikes. It was an encouraging night for Rogers, who had been pitching well after a rough first couple months in the minors.
Rogers has yet to face a Cardinals hitter at least ten times.
I haven't yet seen the lineup. If you have, feel free to post in in the comments.
In the bullpen:
Mike McClendon pitched 0.2 innings (11 pitches) last night.
John Axford pitched 0.1 innings (25 pitches) last night.
Kameron Loe pitched 1 inning (12 pitches) last night.
Jim Henderson pitched 0.2 innings (16 pitches) last night.
Jose Veras pitched one inning (15 pitches) Wednesday.
Francisco Rodriguez last pitched on Tuesday.
Livan Hernandez last pitched on Monday.
Manny Parra hasn't pitched since Tuesday, July 24 and isn't expected to be available this weekend.