SPRINGFIELD–It was afternoon baseball at Hammons Field Wednesday. In attendance, thousands of grade school kids, and one big league pitcher. KOLR 10’s Chris Pinson has more on a Cardinal icon making his rehab start.

“I’m not a nervous person honestly. I get to where I want to run through a wall so I gotta harness that.”

Since belting out the National Anthem on Opening Day, St. Louis Cardinal fans haven’t seen much of Adam Wainwright. A nagging groin injury kept the veteran hurler from starting a single game this season.

But he isn’t far from returning to the show.

Wednesday afternoon, Wainwright toed the rubber at Hammons Field in a rehab start against the Midland Rockhounds.

The crafty right-hander allowed two runs on four hits and struck out three batters in three innings.

“Too many in three. Too many in three, but I got better the longer I went. The last inning I definitley more sharp on the edges. Just a lot of mistakes the first two innings. I threw a lot of strikes. I think I had around 40 strikes, but a lot of pitches in the middle of the plate.”

In the top of the first, Wainwright showed no issues with mobility, as he ran to first to receive the ball from Chandler Redmond for the last out of the inning.

The only real trouble spot for the three-time All-Star came in the top of the second when he surrendered a two-run home run to Michael Guldberg.

“Whether I’m trying to make a pitch in the dirt with two strikes or if I’m trying to make a pitch on the corner down and away it’s just execution. Professional hitters are the best in the game, best in the world. So, it’s already hard enough. We just have to keep it simple.”

But the Springfield offense had his back. Scoring three runs in the home-half of the frame. Highlighted by Pedro Pages two-run double.

Wainwright ended his outing on 59 pitches. With back-to-back strikeouts.

“I controlled counts for the most part well today, but I was just too much in the middle of the plate. I gave up a few hits, but that’s why we’re here. That’s why we’re here. It was the first game out, so when I come back I’ll be ready.”

Waino says his next rehab start will be on the road with Springfield, next Tuesday, in Wichita.