Cards hopeful Wacha can avoid the hype - KMOV.com

Cards hopeful Wacha can avoid the hype

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By John Bailey By John Bailey
By Brendan Marks By Brendan Marks
BOSTON, MA - OCTOBER 30:  Michael Wacha #52 of the St. Louis Cardinals reacts against the Boston Red Sox during Game Six of the 2013 World Series at Fenway Park on October 30, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts.  (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) By Rob Carr BOSTON, MA - OCTOBER 30: Michael Wacha #52 of the St. Louis Cardinals reacts against the Boston Red Sox during Game Six of the 2013 World Series at Fenway Park on October 30, 2013 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Rob Carr/Getty Images) By Rob Carr
By John Bailey By John Bailey

BaseballStL is in Jupiter for spring training. Follow us on twitter @BaseballStL_app and follow our writers @TheJJBailey, @MauriceDrummond and @BFeldman for videos, articles and analysis.

(BaseballStL) - When you're the NLCS MVP barely over a year out of college it's natural for a fan base to put unrealistic expectations on you.  It's also natural for there to be a lot of attention as well.

Welcome to Michael Wacha's life.

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"I'm seeing (Wacha) shirts all over the place," manage Mike Matheny quipped.

But how will that affect the Texas A&M alum?  He's said in the past he can't get caught up in the expectations others place on him.  And it's that type of attitude that gets the Cardinals attention.

"(Wacha) has a maturity to him, especially for as young as he is, to handle that distraction because (the attention) can be a distraction," Matheny said. "I don't think he's buying into all the hype.  I think he realizes he has something to prove every time he toes the rubber and kind of has an edge about that's a priority,"

Wacha takes the ball today against the Mets in his first appearance of spring.  He'll go 2-3 innings with a limit or 40-45 pitches.

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