Baseball would be diminished without great arguments. It is entirely appropriate, even necessary, for a timeless game to promote inscrutable questions. What else to do during the pauses between Erik Bedard offerings?
Who would you draft first, Trout or Harper? Should the designated hitter be enacted universally or completely (and mercifully) abolished?

Which stumblebum group is worse: the Astros, Marlins or ’62 Mets?

Does the industry’s longest sellout streak in San Francisco, the civic connection in St. Louis or Philadelphia’s unvarnished passion translate into the Best Fans in Baseball? Whitey or TLR, who you taking?

Is Adam Wainwright an ace?

Since Wainwright signed a five-year, $97.5 million extension before opening day, the merits of the righthander as an ace have been kicked around among media, scouts and executives. It is an intriguing talking point regarding a pitcher who ranks high, even leading his contemporaries in several important statistical categories.

Wainwright has twice managed podium finishes in balloting for NL Cy Young Award. New statistical measures weighed heavily in Wainwright’s failure to capture the 2009 award. (He deservedly placed second to unanimous selection Roy Halladay in 2010.) Wainwright long pitched in the shadow, or at least shared the spotlight, with teammate Chris Carpenter. He was injured during the Cardinals’ remarkable 2011 World Series run. He speaks honestly but not in controversial tones.

What Wainwright does represent is the cornerstone of this season’s most dominant starting rotation. It is why the Cardinals dropped a philosophical objection to guaranteeing any pitcher a fifth season when the deadline approached for a deal this spring.