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Cards keep Lynn in line to start Game 5

Cards keep Lynn in line to start Game 5

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Cards keep Lynn in line to start Game 5
SAN FRANCISCO -- Though Lance Lynn was unable to make it through four innings in his start on Sunday, the Cardinals are not planning to make any changes to their National League Championship Series rotation. That means Lynn remains in line to start Game 5, which will be played in St. Louis on Friday.

Lynn has denied fatigue being an issue at any point this season, though workload is something that the Cardinals will continue to closely monitor. Lynn pitched only 109 2/3 innings during the 2011 regular season and another 11 during the 2011 postseason. This year, he surpassed that total before the end of July.

NLCS

As a result, Lynn, in his first year as a Major League starter, sits fewer than 17 innings away from hitting the 200-inning mark.

"It's something that we have to be cognizant of," general manager John Mozeliak said of Lynn's workload. "I think getting the break into the bullpen at the end of the year did help him. But, clearly, when you go from the amount of innings that he had last year to where he's at, that's a lot of workload. But he is a horse. Hopefully it's not something that we have to run him out of gas."

Because Lynn has, Sunday's outing excluded, been able to regularly maintain his command deep into games, the Cardinals have not become overly concerned by the stress of the workload yet. What has been more of a challenge for Lynn lately is finding a routine that fits with his fluctuation of roles.

He went from the rotation to the bullpen in August before ending the regular season back as a starter. He then started the postseason in a relief role before being summoned to start in this series.

"That's not easy on anybody," manager Mike Matheny said. "He's had an opportunity to grow through some of the things we've thrown at him, like going to the 'pen. He knows he has to do whatever he can to help us win."

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