It only takes one bad inning—a couple of bad pitches—to turn a solid debut into a questionable start. Adam Wainwright sliced through three innings with nothing more than some loud, scary outs to show for it, but in the fourth inning a couple of at-bats (and then pitches) got away from him. Jason Kubel hit an 88-mph cutter by Carlos Beltran, and A.J. Pollock turned a 93-mph fastball into a sinking liner that bounced off the ground and then Jon Jay's glove.
Wainwright got to two strikes on three consecutive batters, prior to that 1-1 sinker to Pollock, and was unable to retire any of them. That's the stuff a nightmare-inning is made of, and as imprecise as Wainwright looked in the middle of it he did strike out the bottom of the order to escape it. We're 35 starts minus four innings away from his big contract even kicking in, so it's hard to take too much from 20 pitches or so in mid-inning.
Meanwhile: There's still time for Ian Kennedy to have his own nightmare inning.