ST. LOUIS — One last time Thursday night, the Mets faced an old nemesis, Adam Wainwright. And it went totally fine.
They hung on to beat the Cardinals, 4-2, after reaching Wainwright for three runs in six innings. Pete Alonso hit a two-run homer in the fourth, and Francisco Lindor added an RBI double in the fifth.
That was the expected final meeting between the Mets and the 41-year-old Wainright, who has said this season will be his last. After three All-Star selections, four top-five Cy Young Award finishes and a World Series championship, he is petering out at the finish, posting an 8.42 ERA.
Of his 16 outings, just two have been quality starts. And both have been against the Mets: June 17 at Citi Field and this time at Busch Stadium.
Wainwright has been stuck on 198 career wins since beating the Mets in New York.
“Except for when he faces us, I pull for guys like him a lot,” manager Buck Showalter said. “I think everybody does. He’s been a consummate pro and a competitor. I hope everybody keeps that in mind. I’m sure fans here do.”
Wainwright earned an infamous place in Mets lore with a curveball that froze Carlos Beltran to end the 2006 NLCS. Overall, though, the Mets actually did pretty well against him. In 21 games (16 starts) — regular season and postseason combined — he had an 8-7 record, 4.44 ERA and 1.37 WHIP.
Jose Quintana, Wainwright’s teammate for part of last season, called him “one of my favorites.”
“He’s amazing. Great human being. He’s unbelievable,” Quintana said. “Hopefully he gets his 200th win this year and retires as a legend. He’s a legend, in my opinion, already.”
Quintana, earning his first win in six starts with the Mets, gave up two runs in six-plus innings. Tyler O’Neill’s homer in the seventh was the first allowed by Quintana since Aug. 2, 2022 — his first appearance for the Cardinals, who acquired him in a trade with the Pirates at the deadline.
“I wanted this W and to get the first one,” he said. “I can breathe now and keep it going.”