General manager John Mozeliak said he believes it is a "significant injury" and the early word is "not encouraging."
"After his bullpen on Monday, he did feel something in his right elbow," Mozeliak said. "I can say just based on the initial evaluation from our training staff, things do not look encouraging. But before we jump to any conclusions, we'll just wait until the re-evaluation this afternoon."
So as to remove any doubt from your mind, Wainwright is looking at Tommy John as a likely outcome. While that's not the death sentence it once was for pitchers -- in fact he's got excellent chances to make a full recovery from this type of surgery -- it does make 2011 look pretty ugly. We were in a tight race on paper with the Brewers and the Reds and losing Wainwright probably costs us upwards of 4 wins relative to a replacement like Kevin Millwood.
The axiom of "that's why they play the games" still applies but there's no way to sugar coat news like this. The best we can hope for at this point is that a more comprehensive evaluation indicates a less severe injury.
Get well soon, Adam.