Cardinals seek to get Wainwright on track against Reds

Former St. Louis ace Adam Wainwright gets another chance to turn things around in 2012 today, when the Cardinals host the Cincinnati Reds in the third and final game of a three-game series at Busch Stadium.

The Cardinals made it two in a row in the series and four of five overall against Cincinnati on Wednesday, when Jaime Garcia pitched seven strong innings and Rafael Furcal went 4-for-5 with two RBI and a run scored as St. Louis clobbered the Reds, 11-1.

Carlos Beltran and Tyler Greene each hit a two-run home run for the Cardinals, who have won four straight. Garcia (2-0) gave up just one run on seven hits with three walks and three strikeouts.

Devin Mesoraco went 2-for-4 with an RBI for the Reds, who have dropped five of six. Mat Latos (0-2) was lit up for eight runs on nine hits with three walks and six strikeouts over just 5 2/3 innings.

Wainwright, who pitched exclusively in relief over 61 appearances when the Cardinals won the World Series in 2006, quickly developed into a starting ace in subsequent seasons, winning 14, 11, 19 and 20 games between 2007-10 before an elbow injury last spring cost him the entire 2011 season.

The 6-foot-7, 228-pounder has made two starts so far this April and had unsuccessful results, dropping a pair of decisions - to Milwaukee and Chicago - while giving up 11 hits and 11 runs in 8 2/3 innings.

He's walked three and struck out nine, but opposition batters have a .306 average against him, up 61 points from his career mark of .245.

Wainwright is 3-4 in 12 career games against the Reds with a 3.98 earned run average.

Cincinnati counters with 35-year-old Key West, Fla. native Bronson Arroyo, who starts for the third time overall this season and the 30th time in his career against the Cardinals.

The 6-foot-4, 196-pounder has allowed 13 hits and four earned runs in starts against Miami and Washington but has emerged with no-decisions in each while the Reds have gone 1-1.

Arroyo is 7-12 with a 4.59 ERA in 186 1/3 innings against the Cardinals, allowing 202 hits and walking 53 with 116 strikeouts.

He won a career-best 17 games in 2010 before tumbling to just nine wins in 32 starts last season, just the second time since 2003 that he finished short of double-digit wins.