Wainwright: Leake will be even better with Cardinals

Ezra Shaw / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Mike Leake is the latest free-agent pitcher to ink a long-term deal, signing a five-year agreement worth $80 million with the St. Louis Cardinals on Tuesday, and Adam Wainwright approves of his club's newly acquired arm.

"I think this is one of those patented, under-the-radar, great signings," Wainwright said on the "Bernie Show" on 101 ESPN after the deal was announced.

Before a trade to the San Francisco Giants at the July trade deadline, Leake spent his entire career in the National League Central with the Cincinnati Reds, so Wainwright and his fellow Cardinals know the right-hander well.

"He’s solid, he’s a proven winner, he’s a proven innings eater and he’s a proven great athlete," Wainwright explained. "I really think Mike Leake is going to take off. He’s just starting to scratch the surface of what he can do. And I think you’re going to see him be even better as a St. Louis Cardinal."

After coming up short in their pursuits of David Price and Jason Heyward, the Cardinals' addition of Leake will help them stabilize a starting rotation that will be without Lance Lynn, who will miss the entire 2016 season after undergoing Tommy John surgery.

CARDINALS PROJECTED ROTATION

PITCHER W-L IP ERA WHIP
Adam Wainwright 2-1 28 1.61 1.04
Carlos Martinez 14-7 179.2 3.01 1.29
Mike Leake 11-10 192 3.70 1.16
Jaime Garcia 10-6 129.2 2.43 1.05
Michael Wacha 17-7 181.1 3.38 1.21

Leake owns a career mark of 64-52 with a 3.88 ERA and 1.27 WHIP across 177 appearances, 172 of which have been starts.

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Wainwright: Leake will be even better with Cardinals
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