Updates from Thursday, May 22
Michael Wacha says he's on track to make his next start. #stlcards— Jenifer Langosch (@LangoschMLB) May 22, 2014
Even the dugout isn't a safe haven for Michael Wacha. The St. Louis Cardinals starter was struck in the right arm by a foul ball and knocked out of Wednesday night's game against the Arizona Diamondbacks, per Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com:
Wacha, who was hit on pitching arm by Matt Adams' foul ball line drive in the bottom of the 6th, not coming back out. Neshek in. #stlcards— Jenifer Langosch (@LangoschMLB) May 22, 2014
The team revealed that Wacha suffered only a contusion, and his exit from the game was for precautionary reasons:
INJURY REPORT: Michael Wacha removed from the game for precautionary reasons with a rt. elbow contusion, struck by a foul ball in the dugout— St. Louis Cardinals (@Cardinals) May 22, 2014
After bursting onto the scene in the second half of the 2013 season, Wacha has followed up with a strong sophomore campaign. He was 3-3 heading into the night, with a 2.82 earned run average. Chris Tunno put into context how good the 22-year-old has been so far:
Michael Wacha has allowed three runs or less in each of his 10 starts this season with eight of them 6.0 innings or more.— Chris Tunno (@TunesSTL) May 22, 2014
As Fox Sports' Gabe Kapler pointed out, Wacha and Adam Wainwright give St. Louis one of the best 1-2 combos in baseball:
fWAR as metric, combo of Waino and Wacha are the best 1-2 punch in the NL this season. 3 WAR combined. #Cards Let's hope Wacha is ok.— gabe kapler (@gabekapler) May 22, 2014
Taking him out of the starting rotation for an extended amount of time would be a major blow for the Cardinals, who entered Wednesday three games back of the Milwaukee Brewers. Although St. Louis has no shortage of starting pitchers, Wacha looks to be a special kind of talent.
The good news is that the injury is only a contusion, rather than some sort of muscle/ligament issue. Presumably, Wacha could miss a start, but he shouldn't be out for too long.