(Jupiter, FL) Pitcher Michael Wacha struck out four of the six batters he faced in his Grapefruit League debut as his St. Louis Cardinals fell 3-0 to the Boston Red Sox on Monday.
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“I was real happy with the outcome and the way the whole body felt today,” said Wacha, who has regained his touch with the changeup.
“I had pretty good feel with it today,” he said. “The fastball command wasn’t exactly where I wanted it to with the glove side fastballs. Other than that, I was real happy with it.”
“I thought he was great,” complimented Mike Matheny. “That was a very, very good outing. Changeup was obviously there–had swings and misses. Curveball looked good–threw it for a strike, missed one, came back and threw it for a strike. Downhill on his fastball. We’re preaching a lot about controlling counts with the fastball right now and I think he’s probably holding himself to a very high standard but looked very good to me.”
Physically, Wacha understands the questions but has no lingering concerns from the scapular stress reaction which sidelined him for much of last season.
“I feel strong, for sure,” said Wacha. “Just keep on staying on top of arm-care stuff and staying in the weight room and continuing to keep getting stronger and build that stamina to get me ready for the season.”
–A day after he was forced out of his start after just 23 pitches, tthe Cardinals received the expected good news after doctors examined and tested Lance Lynn.
“We had good response from his test,” said Matheny. “Still just going with a mild hip flexor.”
Lynn had been optimistic that he would remain on his normal schedule to start, but could see that delayed as a precaution.
“We’re going to go easy,” said Matheny. “He’s still got a ways to go before we push and even see what actions are bothering him but right now we’ll just take a chance and slow down a little bit.”
–Carlos Martinez will start Tuesday, Marco Gonzales on Wednesday and Jaime Garcia on Thursday against Baltimore.