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Cards' Wainwright says he's ready for heavy duty


JUPTER, Fla. (AP) - Adam Wainwright's season-ending elbow injury last February was supposed to ruin the St. Louis Cardinals' season. Now, the former 20-game winner is healthy again, ready to rejoin a rotation that was strong enough to win it all without him.

That's a major reason why the Cardinals are optimistic at the opening of their first spring training without Albert Pujols, Tony La Russa and Dave Duncan in a very long time. Even if the 6-foot-7, 230-pound Wainwright throws fewer than 200 innings, the estimate the Cardinals have used in their desire to play it safe with a right-hander not yet a year removed from elbow reconstruction, they view it as a major plus.

The 30-year-old Wainwright was a workhorse before getting hurt last spring, totaling 266 1-3 innings in 2009-10.

Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.

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