Chris Carpenter: 5 Teams for Whom Cardinals Pitcher Could Make a Difference

J. David Lee@jdavidlee19Contributor IIIApril 27, 2011

Chris Carpenter: 5 Teams for Whom Cardinals Pitcher Could Make a Difference

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    Chris Carpenter has experienced many things as a big league pitcher. He's been a highly touted youngster. He's had to sit out a year with an injury. He's been dumped by a major league team and picked up off the scrap heap by another.

    He's won the Comeback Player of the Year, and he's been a World Series hero.

    Now, he finds himself in the last year of a contract at 35 years old. Although he's gotten off to a slow start in 2011, he's still a guy that's capable of eating lots of innings for a pitching staff.

    The Cardinals have an option on Carpenter for 2012, but if they aren't in the pennant race at the trade deadline, they could be willing to make a deal.

    Here are five teams for whom Carpenter could make a difference.

Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim

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    Currently behind the Texas Rangers by half a game, the Angels could be in the market for a big-time pitcher at the trade deadline.

    The American League West can always turn into a dog fight. The difference in such races is usually pitching.

    Jered Weaver has been outstanding thus far with six straight wins and an ERA of 0.99.

    Dan Haren has been almost as good with a 4-1 record and an ERA of 1.46.

    Tyler Chatwood has held his own in four starts, going 2-1.

    After those three starters, it gets messy. Ervin Santana is 0-3 with an ERA in the mid fives.

    Chris Carpenter could be a big help.

Texas Rangers

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    Did I mention a dog fight in the American League West?

    Texas lost Cliff Lee and didn't make any noise in the Zack Greinke derby, so they came into the season with a need for a starter.

    That being said, their first four have thrown the ball well so far. Alexi Ogando, C.J. WIlson, Matt Harrison and Derek Holland all have three wins and only Holland has an ERA above four.

    Carpenter could come in and give the Rangers another solid option.

New York Yankees

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    Can you ever leave out the Yankees when talking about trade deadline deals?

    Currently leading the American League East, the Yankees have bashed their way there. Only CC Sabathia and A.J. Burnett have stood out as starters.

    Phil Hughes is experiencing arm problems. He's had an alarming drop of velocity.

    Carpenter could slot as high as number two on this staff.

Cleveland Indians

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    When is the last time you could talk about the Indians acquiring players at the trade deadline?

    For years, they've been sellers, not buyers.

    They've had an impressive April, opening up a 2.5-game lead in the American League Central.

    Justin Masterson has been masterful with five wins so far. Josh Tomlin has three wins and a 2.33 ERA, which is just short of Masterson's 2.18.

    The Central could be very winnable with another solid starter.

    Cleveland has the prospects to give in return.

Atlanta Braves

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    The farm system has the prospects it would take.

    It's going to take a big time move to win the National League East over the Phillies or the surprising Marlins.

    Tim Hudson, Derek Lowe and Tommy Hanson provide a solid trio of pitchers for the Braves staff.

    Jair Jurrjens has had three straight quality starts since coming back from an oblique injury and has the pure stuff to be the ace of the staff.

    In order to catch the front-runners, they will need another quality starter. Carpenter makes sense.

    All could be moot if the Cardinals are battling it out in the NL Central, but if they aren't in the race, expect them to get something for Carpenter while he has something left.