The St. Louis Cardinals wasted no time in making sure the longtime leader of their pitching staff returns next season.
The Cardinals have re-signed right-hander Adam Wainwright to a one-year contract for the 2019 season, the team announced Thursday. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed, though it is heavy in incentives based on games started and game appearances, according to a report from the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Next season will mark Wainwright's 15th with the Cardinals, tying Bob Forsch for the third-most in franchise history.
"Adam represents everything we think of when asked to describe a winning player and a winning teammate," said Cardinals chairman Bill DeWitt Jr. in a statement. "His value to our team stretches far beyond the box score, and he showed by season's end that he is still ready and able to compete."
Wainwright, 37, was 2-4 with a 4.46 ERA this season, spending the majority of the year on the disabled list with right elbow inflammation. He returned to make four starts in September, posting a 4.84 ERA and striking out 25 batters in 22 1/3 innings.
"Adam has proven, when healthy, that he still has the ability and the drive to contribute at the highest level," stated Cardinals president of baseball operations John Mozeliak. "We saw it in Spring Training, and again late in the season, that once he had overcome his ailments, he was prepared to give us a winning effort every time he took the mound. There is a risk, but it is shared, and this deal gives us added depth as we look to 2019."
Injuries have taken their toll on Wainwright in recent years. A three-time All-Star and two-time National League Cy Young runner-up, he hasn't posted an ERA below 4.00 in a full season since 2014, when he went 20-9 with a 2.38 ERA. He pitched in only seven games (four starts) as the result of an Achilles injury in 2015 and hasn't been the same since.
For his career, Wainwright is 148-85 with a 3.32 ERA in 352 games (285 starts), all with St. Louis.
(With inputs from agencies.)