Wainwright on schedule to start Opening Day

JUPITER, Fla. -- Adam Wainwright will make his first Grapefruit League start on Monday, putting the right-hander on schedule to be the Cardinals' Opening Day starter against the D-backs on April 1.

Manager Mike Matheny has not officially announced that Opening Day assignment, but Wainwright has long appeared to be the obvious candidate for the start. His schedule now only further affirms that. If Wainwright pitches every fifth day beginning next Monday against the Astros (12:05 p.m. CT), his spot would fall on that April 1 date.

In between, Wainwright would have enough time to make as many as seven Grapefruit League starts because of the extended spring schedule. Asked if that would be too much work for Wainwright during Spring Training, Matheny said, "We'll just watch and see how it plays out."

Last spring, Wainwright made five starts (18 2/3 innings) prior to his regular-season debut.