Pitcher Tim Cooney will make his Major League debut on Thursday as Mike Matheny announced the left-hander will start in place of Adam Wainwright, who will undergo Achilles tendon surgery that same day.

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“Watching how he’s been throwing and also the kind of season he had not just last year, but how he threw in the spring,” explained Matheny on the decision. “There were a lot of things–he had a real good spring for us. I tell them too, what you guys do when you get an opportunity to pitch in front of us creates opportunities and I think he’s made the most of it in the spring and is throwing the ball so far this year and we’ll give him a chance to show what he can do at this level.”

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In Spring Training this year, Cooney had four appearances and allowed just one run–a solo home run–in eight innings pitched while opponents hit just .160 against him.

“He was more aggressive,” noted Matheny. “A year ago, I thought he was picking a little bit and getting himself into tough counts and then having to find the middle of the plate–typical stuff that you see with a young pitcher¬†feeling he has to be perfect. Really liked how he was going about every outing he had.”

Thus far into the season with Memphis, Cooney has a line of 17.1 IP, 15 hits, 7 ER, 5 BBs, and 14 Ks. He is expected to arrive in St. Louis on Wednesday.


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