ST. LOUIS, MO - MAY 31: Starter Michael Wacha #52 of the St. Louis Cardinals pitches against the San Francisco Giants in the first inning at Busch Stadium on May 31, 2014 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images) By Dilip Vishwanat
(BaseballStL) —Saturday was Michael Wacha’s 12th start, and that of course meant rain. The 22-year-old pitcher has had seven starts affected by weather, and five with a delay.
Game three with the Giants saw two temporary shutdowns for made-in-Missouri rain, when St. Louis’ skies opened up to dump a torrential onslaught of water on Busch.
The first came in the fifth inning, moments after Oscar Taveras celebrated his promotion to the majors with a 418 foot homer to right.
After 47 minutes of downpour, play resumed. Wacha remained in the contest despite the stoppage, and struck out two in a twenty pitch frame. One inning of baseball snuck in, then the rain reclaimed the day in the top of the seventh.
Following the game manager Mike Matheny explained that since the first break was short, he was comfortable with sending Wacha back out there. But the second break, both Matheny and Wacha knew his afternoon was finished.
It pushed Wacha’s total downtime to six hours and 30 minutes this season, and the 51 minute intermission was enough to cut short his appearance.
“Yea, this guy is going to be tough as nails, if he’s not already,” Matheny explained, “with all the different tests he’s been through. Just the consistency of what he’s doing is impressive.”
Despite spending more than an hour and a half waiting out the rain, the young starter turned in a fantastic outing against the MLB-best Giants. In his abbreviated performance, Wacha struck out seven while allowing only three hits, one with any force behind it.
Wacha has now fanned 75 on the season with an ERA of 2.45.