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Wainwright figuring out second-half troubles

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PHILADELPHIA -- It was clear that Adam Wainwright was not happy on Friday night after a 5-4 loss to the Phillies in which he allowed all five runs. The veteran went six innings and settled in after a four-run third cost him the lead and eventually the game but he indicated that maybe, just maybe, he had figured something out over those last few innings.

Granted, he wasn't going to get specific and took on a joking/serious "I could tell you but then I'd have to kill you" approach to the questions that followed, but the only way to know if he's righted himself will come on Wednesday when he makes his next start in Pittsburgh. One thing is for sure, manager Mike Matheny remains confident in his veteran starter.

"He's a guy that's working to figure it out," Matheny said. "It just doesn't come that easy. [Hitters] are making adjustments as well. You get a pitcher throwing 96 [mph] and there is a lot more room for error. He's been very consistent in making pitches on the corner, but a couple of times the strike zone has been set tighter, including last night, but it was consistent for both pitchers.

"He sets the bar high for himself. A game like yesterday, if he gets some run production, something he hasn't had a whole lot of this year, he wins. He gives us a chance every time he goes out there. He's our ace and we can't wait to get him back out there."

In seven starts since the All-Star break, Wainwright is 3-4 with a 4.70 ERA. Only twice did he not throw at least six innings and he's still 15-8 this season with a 2.52 ERA after he finished the first half with a 1.83 ERA.

"There's something that needs to click, and if anyone is going to figure it out it's [Wainwright]," Matheny said.

Michael Radano is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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