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Lance Lynn Struggles Again In St. Louis Cardinals Bullpen Meltdown

Few first-half stories were more impressive than Lance Lynn's dominant introduction to the St. Louis Cardinals' rotation. Few second-half stories are more frustrating right now than Lynn's spiraling decline right out of the rotation, which seems to have been built as much on the awkward bunching of line drives and bloop singles as it has declining peripherals. Sunday, in the Cardinals' loss to the Washington Nationals, Lynn was blooped and slapped into another rocky outing, taking the loss in the seventh inning after allowing four singles in one inning of work.

This latest ding sends his ERA over 4.00, and drops his record down to 13-6. With the 40-man roster opening the Cardinals' bullpen further, it might also be the last time Lance Lynn gets a high-leverage chance in 2012.

Taken in its entirety this still seems like a successful first trip through the rotation for Lynn, who showed more than enough to earn another shot next year. But in August and September it's been nothing but frustration.