Adam Wainwright opened this season on the Major League roster for the first time in his career. …
School: Glynn Academy High School (Brunswick, GA)
Cardinal: Acquired from the Atlanta Braves witch pitchers Ray King and Jason Marquis in exchange for outfielders J.D. Drew and Eli Marrero on December 13,
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JS (2): "Wainwright needs to do something to catch the Cardinals attention if he wants to remain in their plans as a starting pitcher. Right now, it appears he is the seventh man in the starting rotation. I think there is a good chance that Wainwright could be included in a trade. If not, he will probably spend 2006 at Memphis or pitching out of the Cardinals bullpen."
LM (3): "Since I placed Stuart Pomeranz in this slot and Adam Wainwright ended up here, I will do a bit of comparision between them. Both are listed at 6' 7" with Pomeranz carrying at bit more weight, 220 lbs to 205 lbs. They earned their outs in similar ways. Wainwright struck out more percentage-wise (27% to Pomeranz' 21%) but they were nearly identical when it came to contact outs. 54.85% of Wainwright's contact outs came via a groundball to 55.92% for Pomeranz. Wainwright turned 22 in August of his Double-A season. Pomeranz turned 21 in December after his first Double-A season. Wainwright lost most of the '04 season in Triple-A due to injury. He will probably repeat Triple-A in 2006 as he is not given a serious chance of making the major league squad next spring. While Wainwright is still a legitimate prospect, I think Pomeranz has far more untapped potential than does Wainwright at this point. This earned Pomeranz the higher ranking, in my estimation Baseball America ranked Wainwright as the Cardinals' sixth-best prospect and Baseball HQ ranked him at fifth."
RM (2): "Wainwright isn't as polished as Anthony Reyes, but according to some reports his stuff is supposed to be just as good. I'm not sure I agree that he is as good as Reyes, but he has the stuff to be ranked higher than the other pitching prospects in the organization.
"His fastball is above average, hitting around 92-93 MPH, but it looks a lot faster because his change up and curve are very good. He is a fierce competitor that is going to make it to the majors eventually. The Cardinals are trying to get him to pitch more inside and there has always been questions about his conditioning. His 10-10 record and a 4.40 ERA gives me some cause for concern, considering in 2004 in 12 games at Memphis, Adam was 4-4 with a 5.37 ERA. As you can see his ERA at AAA dropped down almost a whole run, so that is a good sign.
"He needs to be more consistent, he has never dominated opposing batters for any extended period of time. I have a little concern about his mental approach to the game as a starter and he may be better suited as a reliever. He'll be in the starting rotation for AAA Memphis to start the season."
BW (2): "I would like nothing better than to see Wainwright go to Memphis and pitch lights-out, forcing the Cardinals to bring him up and use him. My second choice would be for them to trade Wainwright while his value as a minor league prospect is still on the high side. The flip side is that if this season is another disappointment, Wainwright may start to slip off radar screens. After all, he participated in the Futures Game 3-1/2 seasons ago. For Wainwright, it's time for the future to arrive in 2006."
STAFF COMMENTS KEY: Staff Member (Individual Ranking); JS = Jason Scott; LM = Leonda Markee; BW = Brian Walton; RM = Ray Mileur; NR = Not Rated
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