ST. LOUIS -- Though the Cardinals planned to watch Adam Wainwright pitch late into Wednesday night, they had a nine-man bullpen ready to assist if necessary.
Lance Lynn, who started Game 2 of the National League Division Series, was fresh and available out of the 'pen for Game 5. The only two pitchers that manager Mike Matheny planned to stay away from were Joe Kelly and Michael Wacha, both of whom started games in Pittsburgh.
"We've got a game plan going in, and you're going to have to probably be able to move a lot quicker if things don't look like they're following the plan," Matheny said, speaking to the urgency of managing an elimination game. "We have almost an all-hands-on-deck [situation]. We do have some young pitchers that we're concerned about not throwing them out there too soon and into situations that they haven't been put into before. We just have to be careful with them."
Both Lynn and Shelby Miller were available to eat up multiple innings in long relief. The other seven relievers were all fresh after having the day off on Tuesday.
Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, and follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB. Chad Thornburg is an associate reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.