Chris Carpenter's Return Is Successful

Sixty Feet, Six Inches Correspondent IMay 22, 2009

ST. LOUIS - APRIL 9:  Starting pitcher Chris Carpenter #29 of the St. Louis Cardinals throws against the Pittsburgh Pirates on April 9, 2009 at Busch Stadium in St. Louis, Missouri. The Cardinals beat the Pirates 2-1.  (Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)

It's easy for us to forget just how good Chris Carpenter is.

Nobody went without noticing him in 2005, when he lit the league up with a 2.83 ERA, 1.05 WHIP, 213 K, 21 win, and a four shutout season. He also had a shiny Cy Young trophy to top that off.

He didn't forget how good he was the following year, when he had just as dominant of a season, capped with a league-best WHIP of 1.06 and three shutouts.

These past two years, however, we've forgotten about Chris Carpenter. He lost his 2007 season to surgery, removing bone spurs, and his next season was spent recovering from Tommy John surgery.

He made only three starts in 2008, but looked good in those starts.

This year started out promisingly, as Carpenter pitched seven innings of one-hit ball against the Pirates, striking out seven batters. At his next start, he lasted only three innings and made another trip to the disabled list. Fans of the game sighed, "Here we go again," right?


Carpenter made his return yesterday, and triumphant it was. He lasted five innings against the Cubs, striking out four while walking two and surrendering three hits. He didn't give up a run, and St. Louis won the game for him.

Through his three starts this year, Carpenter has pitched 15 innings, striking out 13, while walking only four, with a shimmering 0.80 WHIP. He has yet to surrender a run.

Folks...he's back.

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