The Chicago Cubs (5-12) pulled off a dramatic 3-2 win on Monday night thanks to a two-RBI single by Joe Mather in the ninth inning, so now it's up to Adam Wainwright to keep the Cardinals away from a losing streak against their rivals. Wainwright has been ineffective so far this season. Although he has a respectable 14:4 strikeout-to-walk ratio, a .310 batting average allowed and a 1.61 WHIP have given way to 15 runs over 13.2 innings and an unsightly 9.88 ERA.
Wainwright hasn't come anywhere near the form he flashed back in 2010 -- when he was the runner-up for the NL Cy Young award -- but that doesn't mean there has been no positive impact from his end. Viva El Birdos explored the success of reliever Mitchell Boggs so far in 2012, and Wainwright's name came up as a positive influence:
It was reported by several sources that Boggs was working on a split-finger fastball to complement his fastball-slider combination. Jennifer Langosch wrote for stlcardinals.com that Boggs had resurrected his changeup, a pitch the righty has used sparingly since his move to the bullpen. In Langosch's excellent piece, she explains that Boggs altered his changeup grip on the advice of Adam Wainwright so that the pitch now has "more depth." Boggs shared with Langosch that he hopes to use his slider and changeup more to keep opposing batsmen off his fastball.
Here is some information to help you find Game 2 of the series on Tuesday:
Date / Time: 7:05 PM CT, Tuesday, April 24, 2012
Location: Wrigley Field, Chicago, IL
Starting Pitchers: Adam Wainwright (0-3, 9.88 ERA) vs. Jeff Samardzija (2-1, 5.71 ERA)
Radio: AM 720
For updates, stay tuned to SB Nation St. Louis. For more in-depth coverage of this series, visit Cardinals blog Viva El Birdos and Cubs blog Bleed Cubbie Blue. News and notes from around Major League Baseball can be found on Baseball Nation.