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07 July 2010

Waino Goes All The Way, Again

courtesy MLB.comIt was 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 his 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 on LaRussa’s teams complete games 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 and Stephen Strasburg be damned!

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