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News » Wainwright has his best outing so far Cards starter pitches six shutout innings but gets no decision after departing in seventh.


Wainwright has his best outing so far Cards starter pitches six shutout innings but gets no decision after departing in seventh.


Wainwright has his best outing so far Cards starter pitches six shutout innings but gets no decision after departing in seventh.
Despite hacking through what he called quot;the bird flu,quot; Adam Wainwright said he could have pitched all night.

And the Cardinals starter might have done just that against the Cubs on Friday if not for a muffed fly ball in the seventh inning that led to a no-decision in his best outing of the season.

He went seven innings for the first time and held the Cubs scoreless through six before a three-run inning scarred the night, although the Cardinals emerged with a 4-3 win.

quot;I was a lot more efficient, getting quicker outs, attacking more and filling up the strike zone,'' he said. quot;When you're doing that, you get a lot farther in the game. I feel I could still be pitching.''

Wainwright finished with 99 pitches, striking out six and walking one, but threw only 77 through the first six. The one walk to Geovany Soto was part of Chicago's three-run rally that tied the game.

Before that inning, the righthander allowed four hits and extended his string of solid outings against the Cubs. He left without the win after Skip Schumaker muffed a fly ball that led to two unearned runs.

quot;He was outstanding,quot; manager Tony La Russa said. quot;I know he's upset. Three runs somehow got on the board. ... It's a tough no-decision but he contributed mightily to us winning the game.''

Wainwright pitched on seven day's rest after last starting at Wrigley Field in a 7-4 Cardinals win. His schedule had been altered largely so he could face the Cubs.

The move had a bit to do with Wainwright's success against the Cubs the last three times he faced them. It also kept the remainder of the rotation from being disrupted.

quot;It was pretty solid for the most part,quot; he sad. quot;I got some good at-bats placed on me in the seventh and some unlucky stuff went on. But other than that I was sharp. I could have got around that situation but we won the game.''

In his first three starts, Wainwright was 2-0 with a 3.31 ERA, but he had failed to pitch beyond the sixth. More troublesome was his control, which resulted in 12 walks over 16 1/3 innings.

That was never a problem on Friday. He worked ahead in counts and even felt he pitched Soto well in the seventh before a walk made the Cubs catcher the tying run.

quot;I threw some really close pitcher's pitches to him and he ended up taking them,quot; he said.

Wainwright said the multitude of walks early in the season had not registered as a concern. He entered the season averaging 2.8 walks per nine innings for his career.

quot;I really wasn't worried about it, to be honest,quot; he said. quot;I was going to come out of it. I'm not a guy who's going to walk a lot of people. I don't know if that was an anomaly or what. It was a mentality thing, I think. Filling the zone up, attacking hitters and making them adjust to you rather than you adjusting to them.quot;

Wainwright walked at least three in each of his first three starts but had won two in a row. He is in the midst of an eight-game win streak that looked like it would reach nine.

Wainwright stranded Aramis Ramirez at second base after he opened the second with a double. He escaped a jam in the fifth inning when he got Ryan Theriot to ground out with runners at second and third.

And he blamed only himself for the problems in the seventh. Before Schumaker's error, Wainwright allowed two singles, a double and the walk.

But for the most part, he felt that he threw the type of game expected of the pitcher who started on opening day.

quot;When you're working ahead in the count, getting strike one on everyone, they have to be aggressive because they don't want to go 0 and 2,quot; he said. quot;They have to swing at your pitches.quot;


Author:Fox Sports
Author's Website:http://www.foxsports.com
Added: April 25, 2009

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