The 2010 Nation League Cy Young-runner up, St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Adam Wainwright, will not be a candidate in this year's race. That's because the righty has suffered a significant elbow injury that could keep him out the entire 2011 season.
"One of the three most valuable commodities in the Cardinals' clubhouse," wrote MLB.com's Marty Noble on Thursday. "Wainwright probably won't be in the clubhouse -- in uniform -- very often this summer. Wainwright has been betrayed by the ulnar collateral ligament in his right elbow. Club doctors were to examine him in St. Louis Wednesday afternoon and determine whether reconstruction -- Tommy John surgery -- was necessary."
According to Cardinals GM John Mozeliak (via Stltoday.com), Wainwright felt a discomfort in his elbow while pitching batting practice on Monday. Tommy John surgery usually requires a year-plus of rehabilitation, eliminating any possibility of earning enough innings to qualify as a Cy Young candidate.
|2010 - Adam Wainwright||20-11||37||33||5||2||0||0||230.1||186||68||62||15||56||213||2.42||1.05|
More from GM Mozeliak after the jump...
"I can say just based on the initial evaluation from our training staff, things do not look encouraging,' said Mozeliak. "But before we jump to any conclusions, we'll just wait until the re-evaluation this afternoon."
According to Noble, Cardinals manager Tony La Russa said the loss of Wainwright is "huge". Noble also mentioned the St. Louis pitching candidates that could move into the rotation.
"Nonetheless, five pitchers, three of them not on the Cardinals' 40-man roster, are seen as the most likely candidates -- veterans Miguel Batista, Ian Snell and P.J. Walters, plus Lance Lynn and Kyle McClellan. Each is right-handed; Walters and McClellan are on the active roster. Lynn is the only one without big league experience, Batista is 40, and Snell, who has a 38-53 record after seven seasons with losing teams, is a one-time Opening Day starter, albeit with the pitching-poor 2008 Pirates."
ESPN's Buster Olney reports that the Cardinals could pursue free-agent pitcher Kevin Milwood.
|2010 - Kevin Millwood||4-16||31||31||1||0||0||0||190.2||223||116||108||30||65||132||5.10||1.51|