Why Won’t Adam Wainwright Retire?

Frank Jones

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Why Won't Adam Wainwright Retire

Adam Wainwright is a veteran Major League Baseball (MLB) pitcher who has spent most of his career with the St. Louis Cardinals. He’s considered one of the best pitchers of his generation, having won multiple awards and setting several franchise records.

Despite being 40 years old and having played in the league for over 15 years, Wainwright has decided to return for one final season in 2023.

Many fans and analysts have been wondering why he won’t retire, especially given his age and the wear and tear of playing professional baseball for so long. In this blog post, we’ll explore some possible reasons for Wainwright’s decision and what it means for the team and his legacy.

Wainwright’s Baseball Career

Adam Wainwright was drafted by the Atlanta Braves in 2000 and made his MLB debut with them in 2005. He was then traded to the St. Louis Cardinals in 2003, where he has spent most of his career.

Throughout his career, Wainwright has achieved numerous accolades, including three All-Star selections, two Gold Glove Awards, and two NL wins leader titles. He’s also been a key player in two World Series championships for the Cardinals in 2006 and 2011.

Wainwright is known for his effective pitching style, which relies on a combination of fastball, curveball, and cutter pitches.

His curveball, in particular, is considered one of the best in the league. He’s also known for his ability to control the game and keep opposing hitters off balance with his deceptive delivery and sharp command.

Wainwright’s success on the mound can be attributed to his ability to read hitters and adjust his pitches accordingly. He’s also known for his mental toughness and ability to bounce back from setbacks, which has helped him overcome injuries and other challenges throughout his career.

All of these factors have contributed to his reputation as one of the most successful and respected pitchers in the league.

Reasons for Wainwright’s Return

One reason why Adam Wainwright is returning for one final season in 2023 is that he still has the ability to contribute to the team. Despite his age, he had a solid performance in the 2022 season, finishing with a 14-8 record, 3.89 ERA, and 182 strikeouts.

He was also a dependable starter throughout the season, pitching over 200 innings and leading the team in starts. Wainwright’s reliability and consistency on the mound make him a valuable asset to the team, even at his age.

Another reason why Wainwright’s return is important for the Cardinals is his leadership qualities and experience. He’s widely respected by his teammates and coaches for his work ethic, professionalism, and willingness to help younger players.

His guidance and mentorship are particularly important for the pitching staff, as he can help them develop their skills and prepare for the challenges of the season.

Finally, there may be personal goals or motivations that are driving Wainwright’s decision to return. He’s mentioned in interviews that he wants to end his career on a high note and leave a lasting legacy with the Cardinals.

He may also want to achieve certain milestones or records, such as reaching 200 career wins or surpassing some of the franchise’s all-time pitching records.

Whatever his motivations may be, it’s clear that Wainwright is committed to giving his all in his final season and helping the team achieve success.

The Decision to Retire

Retirement is a major decision for any athlete, and several factors come into play when making that decision. Age is one of the most important factors, as professional sports demand peak physical condition, and players often experience a decline in performance as they age.

Health is another significant consideration, as injuries can take a toll on the body and affect an athlete’s ability to perform. Family considerations are also important, as athletes may want to spend more time with loved ones or start a new chapter in their lives.

Despite these factors, some athletes continue playing even if they’re past their prime. One reason is the love of the game, as many athletes have dedicated their lives to their sport and find it hard to give up.

Financial considerations can also come into play, as professional sports offer lucrative contracts and endorsement deals. Finally, some athletes may want to achieve certain milestones or records, and continue playing to reach those goals.

There are several examples of athletes who have continued playing past their expected retirement age. Tom Brady, the NFL quarterback, is one such example. He’s currently 44 years old and still playing at a high level, leading his team to multiple Super Bowl championships.

In the NBA, players like LeBron James and Vince Carter have played well into their late 30s and early 40s, continuing to contribute to their teams despite their age.

In baseball, players like Bartolo Colon and Jamie Moyer played into their 40s and 50s, respectively, demonstrating that age is just a number when it comes to playing professional sports.

Ultimately, the decision to retire is a personal one, and each athlete must consider their own priorities and goals. While age and health are important factors, some athletes may choose to continue playing as long as they can contribute to their team and enjoy the game they love.

Adam Wainwright’s Career Stats (as of 2021)

YearTeamGamesStartsWinsLossesERAStrikeoutsInnings Pitched

Note: This table only includes regular-season stats and does not include postseason performance.


How does Wainwright’s return impact the Cardinals’ pitching rotation?

Wainwright’s return provides stability and experience to the Cardinals’ pitching rotation. He’s expected to be one of the team’s top starters and can mentor younger pitchers who are still developing their skills.

How has Wainwright’s performance been in recent seasons?

Wainwright’s performance has been solid in recent seasons, despite his age. In the 2022 season, he had a 14-8 record, 3.89 ERA, and 182 strikeouts, demonstrating that he still has the ability to contribute to the team.

Will Wainwright retire after the 2023 season?

It’s unclear if Wainwright will retire after the 2023 season. He’s mentioned that he wants to end his career on a high note, but hasn’t made any definitive statements about retiring after next season.

How does Wainwright’s leadership style impact the team?

Wainwright is known for his leadership qualities and experience, which have a positive impact on the team’s morale and performance. He sets an example for younger players and helps them develop their skills, both on and off the field.

How does Wainwright’s return impact the Cardinals’ chances of winning the World Series?

Wainwright’s return is seen as a positive for the Cardinals’ chances of winning the World Series in 2023. His experience and leadership qualities make him a valuable asset to the team, and his performance on the mound can help them win critical games. However, the outcome of the season ultimately depends on many factors, including injuries, performance, and team chemistry.


Adam Wainwright’s decision to return for one final season in 2023 is a testament to his dedication and commitment to the game of baseball. Despite his age, he still has the ability to contribute to the team and is a valuable asset both on and off the field.

The decision to retire is a complex one for any athlete, and factors such as age, health, and family considerations all play a role in the decision-making process.

However, some athletes continue playing past their expected retirement age, motivated by their love of the game, financial considerations, or personal goals. Wainwright’s return for one more season is sure to be an exciting time for Cardinals fans, and a fitting end to a remarkable career.

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