Until Tuesday, that had been Mike Mayers’ only day in the big leagues.

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Mayers will also be making his second stint with the Cardinals this season. He had two relief appearances his first time up, pitching four innings and allowing three runs on four hits. Wainwright was injured just prior to his previous start, against the Cubs. He first felt something when he was stretching but went on to produce one of his best starts of the season, pitching 7 2/3 innings and allowing just four hits.

The Cardinals have permanently moved Triple-A reliever into a relief role, believing that it provides Mayers with the best path to a future Major League promotion. Since making the transition, Mayers has allowed two hits and struck out six in five scoreless innings out of the ‘pen.

Votto hasn’t had that chance yet. So if we filter our original list down and look at wasted WAR through age 33, Votto climbs to No. 9 on the list of position players. Although he may never pass Beltre, Bonds or Alex Rodriguez in total wasted WAR, perhaps Votto’s eventual fate will be as his generation’s version of Todd Helton, the longtime Colorado Rockies first baseman who finally made the World Series in 2007 after years of pouring great stats into the void.

“I think we all know that when you bring a player like Carson in, we’re going to need to keep him engaged if he’s going to be able to mlb jersey cheap contribute and help our club like he needs to,” Matheny said. “This is a good opportunity for him to get in there against a pitcher who we’re very comfortable with how they operate.”

It took Mayers 29 pitches to collect his first out, a strikeout of Yasmani Grandal. By the time he tossed that ball aside for a keepsake, the Dodgers had raced out to a four-run lead. Adrian Gonzalez’s grand slam landed the big blow. A two-out single by opposing starter Scott Kazmir left Mayers as the first Cardinals pitcher in 92 years to allow six first-inning runs in his debut.

Mayers, who was scheduled to start for Memphis on Saturday, was instead summoned to St. Louis, where he will make his Major League debut a day later as a spot-starter for the Cardinals. He learned of the assignment around 7 a.m. and arrived at Busch Stadium in time to settle in a day before his debut.

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Six days after Mike Mayers bungled a spot-start opportunity in his Major League debut, the Cardinals watched another game get out of hand as Jaime Garcia struggled on short rest. He allowed a double on his first pitch and a homer on his 15th, putting the Cardinals in an instant four-run hole that the Marlins only deepened en route to an 11-0 rout at Marlins Park on Saturday.

The Cardinals approached Garcia about starting on three days’ rest for the first time in his career on Wednesday, a day after the lefty threw 77 pitches in the nightcap of a doubleheader. He became the preferred choice because of reservations Matheny had in holding either Lyons or Jerome Williams back for a spot start and then not having either reliever available out of the ‘pen for several days before and after the outing.

Tuivailala was just sent back to Triple-A Memphis on Aug. 25 after an ineffective nine-day stint in the big leagues. In eight appearances with the Cardinals this year, Tuivailala has given up six runs on 11 hits in six innings. He saved 18 games with Triple-A Memphis.

Mayers closed the Triple-A season with seven starts, during which he posted a 4.82 ERA. What impressed the organization’s development staff, however, was how he handled the adversity. Even some Major Leaguers who played a few games in Memphis as part of a rehab assignment came back with glowing reports about Mayers’ attitude.



Greinke went 17-8 with a 2.71 ERA and made his second All-Star team last year.<<

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