Cardinals ace Adam Wainwright was hammered for six runs over 4 1/3 innings in his NLDS Game 1 start against the Dodgers and he again failed to make it out of the fifth inning in Game 1 of the National League Championship Series this past Saturday versus the Giants. Those struggles are thought to be related to a lingering elbow issue that Wainwright has been dealing with since the middle of summer.
But there was a tone of optimism in the veteran’s voice after he completed a successful bullpen session Wednesday afternoon at San Francisco’s AT&T Park.
Wainwright, who’s scheduled to face off against Giants ace Madison Bumgarner in Game 5 of the NLCS on Thursday, told USA Today’s Bob Nightengale that he is “very confident going forward” and that his issues have been more mechanical than physical.
It’s the kind of thing you’d expect to hear from a confident, accomplished pitcher on the eve of what could be an elimination game. We’ll find out early Thursday evening how much of that confidence is based in reality.
CINCINNATI — The Los Angeles Dodgers placed pitcher Noah Syndergaard on the 15-day injured list Thursday with a blister on the index finger of his right throwing hand.
Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said the timetable for Syndergaard’s return is unknown despite the 15-day designation.
“The physical, the mental, the emotional part, as he’s talked about, has taken a toll on him,” Roberts said. “So, the ability to get him away from this. He left today to go back to Los Angeles to kind of get back to normalcy.”
Syndergaard allowed six runs and seven hits in three innings against the Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday night, raising his ERA to 7.16.
Syndergaard (1-4) has surrendered at least five runs in three straight starts.
Syndergaard has been trying to return to the player he was before Tommy John surgery sidelined him for the better part of the 2020 and 2021 seasons.
Roberts said Syndergaard will need at least “a few weeks” to both heal and get away from baseball and “reset.”
“I think searching and not being comfortable with where he was at in the moment is certainly evident in performance,” Roberts said. “So hopefully this time away will provide more clarity on who he is right now as a pitcher.
“Trying to perform when you’re searching at this level is extremely difficult. I applaud him from not running from it, but it’s still very difficult. Hopefully it can be a tale of two stories, two halves when he does come back.”