It’s been a frustrating visit to St. Louis for the Atlanta Braves. The finale of the four-game series may be especially so.
One-time Atlanta prospect Adam Wainwright(notes) looks to continue his dominating start to 2010 when he takes the mound on Thursday for the Cardinals, who will try to hand the Braves their ninth straight loss.
After a solid start, Atlanta (8-13) has scored just 13 runs during its skid, and has been blanked three times including a 6-0 defeat to St. Louis (14-7) on Wednesday. The slide is the Braves’ longest since dropping 10 in a row in June 2006.
Snapping that slide against Wainwright (3-1, 1.69 ERA) may prove to be difficult. The right-hander has not given up more than two earned runs in any of his four starts, and has pitched through the eighth inning in three of those games.
Wainwright, who won a career-high 19 games last season, gave up two runs and seven hits over eight innings of a 2-0 loss to San Francisco on Saturday.
The Braves know just how dominating Wainwright can be. He has allowed seven runs while winning all four career starts against them.
“That’s why we’re having a good April,” manager Tony La Russa said. “It’s where it starts. But five more months. …”
The right-hander pitched 6 1-3 innings against New York on Saturday, allowing three runs, four hits and walking four in the 3-2 loss.
St. Louis slugger Albert Pujols(notes) had two hits Wednesday to raise his average to .333. The reigning two-time NL MVP is 9 for 15 over the last four games, but only 2 for 10 lifetime against Jurrjens.
Slumping Braves rookie Jason Heyward(notes) may be back in the lineup after he was given Wednesday off. Following a quick start, Heyward is hitting just .224, and is 1 for 20 with eight strikeouts over his last seven games. He’s 0 for 6 with two strikeouts in this series.