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Chris Carpenter cleared to begin throwing program

May 27, 2012, 9:35 AM EDT

chris carpenter ap AP

The Cardinals were shut out by Kyle Kendrick and the Phillies on Saturday evening at Busch Stadium and have fallen a game-and-a-half behind the Reds in the National League Central standings. But the Budweiser should be flowing as steadily as usual on Memorial Day weekend in the Gateway to the West.

According to Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, veteran right-hander Chris Carpenter “recently began throwing into a net” and will soon progress to regular flat-ground games of catch.

Carpenter has been sidelined since the middle of spring training with nerve issues in his neck and shoulder, and is refraining from projecting a return date. But it’s feasible that he could be ready in six weeks.

“It’s about going day to day, step by step,” the 37-year-old told the Post-Dispatch. “I’m not getting very far ahead. The hope is that everything continues to progress. That’s pretty much where I’m at now.”

Carp registered a 3.45 ERA and 191/55 K/BB ratio across 237 1/3 regular-season innings (34 starts) in 2011.

  1. youjivinmeturkey - May 27, 2012 at 9:38 AM

    WOOT and WOOHOO!!!

  2. spudchukar - May 27, 2012 at 12:05 PM

    ..and just in time too. Jaime Garcia continues to disappoint. He really has only thrown one decent game all year, and the excuses for him continue to mount up. The reality is he has been a severe disappointment, and shows no signs of improving. The label “uncoachable” needs to be applied here, and I recommend a trip to Memphis. Sometimes that will wake up those who fail to translate into action what they are being instructed to do.

    But Garcia should not be the scapegoat. Matheny bears a good deal of responsibility here too. He cannot continue to employ line-ups like Saturday night’s. Resting regulars when appropriate has great value, but his choices for when, whom and how many deserve a great deal of scrutiny. Cruz also needs to return to AAA, in hopes that he can recover some semblance of the player he was in 2011.

    But again, Matheny only shares the blame. The Cardinal management in their infinite cheapness continue to try to cut corners in the reserve department. The only player who can be considered a veteran who isn’t a rookie, or close to it is Schumaker, and he is making less than 1 mil a season. For the most part the youngsters have performed admirably, but eventually the lack of experience and talent will catch up with a team and that seems to be happening now.

    Entering the season without a proper back-up for Molina is sinful. It is even bad business to invest 75 mil and then not properly take care of the investment. There is a big difference between the promising talent of Jay, Freese, Carpenter, Salas, Sanchez, Descalso, Boggs, Craig, Adams and Lynn and the likes of Fick, Hill, Chambers, Robinson, Dickson, Marte, and Cruz.

    Sure the injuries have forced some of the moves, but the latter aforementioned group are not MLB talented, and not all of the former aforementioned will sparkle. Relying solely on AAA call-ups to augment well-paid stars will eventually back-fire. We do not have an alternative to Molina, and starting line-ups that include Cruz, Descalso, and the enigmatic Greene allow pitchers like Kendricks, who is arguably the worst hurler in the NL, to dominate.

    • sir1389 - May 27, 2012 at 4:00 PM

      I instead blame the fact that our DL right now looks like this: Matt Carpenter, Lance Berkman, Allen Craig, Jon Jay, Chris Carpenter, Scott Linebrink, Kyle McClellan. That’s at least 3 top notch starters plus at least 2 others who are good enough to be a starter on any other team. Not to mention the fact that we just got Schumaker back and Wainwright hasn’t played in over a year after TJ surgery last year. I’m actually more surprised we’ve done as well as we have considering.

      • spudchukar - May 27, 2012 at 4:09 PM

        All valid contentions. However, when you lead the league in runs scored and stand 3 games over .500 the blame has to come from somewhere. A healthy Carpenter and Wainwright certainly could take pressure off the other starters who are not aces. But Garcia has still been disappointing, and the Cards need a back-up catcher even everyone was healthy.

      • okwhitefalcon - May 27, 2012 at 5:55 PM

        They’ve got huge bullpen issues that aren’t likely to be solved inside the organization.

        The lack of another lefty beyond Scrabble along with overexposure to Boggs and Marte aren’t helping things.

        They obviously don’t trust Sanchez and Dickson probably won’t be used beyond mopping up.

        Hell, they just called up Chuckie Fick – that gives all the insight that is needed on how thin things have gotten.

  3. The Baseball Idiot - May 27, 2012 at 1:32 PM

    Hey, pudchocker, what games are you watching? This post just proves you don’t anything about baseball . Why not try hockey ? No.one cares and you can pretend to know something about that.

    • spudchukar - May 27, 2012 at 7:17 PM

      This is why I keep coming back to this site, the informed banter and creative critique. As usual BI brilliant commentary, and witty repartee. Stay Classy, Dude.

  4. makeham98 - May 27, 2012 at 1:58 PM

    He’s a cardinal fan. they applaud their players when they hit into double plays and believe that every one if their players should be in the hall of fame. but “wearing a cardinal hat” even though they played 3 seasons or less on the team. because that makes them the best fans in baseball, after all.

    • fearlessleader - May 27, 2012 at 3:09 PM

      Wow! On behalf of Cardinal Nation, I’d like to personally apologize for whichever Cardinal fan tinkled in your corn flakes this morning. Most of us would never have done such a thing.

      • paperlions - May 27, 2012 at 8:42 PM

        It was me, please don’t apologize on my behalf….I ain’t sorry.

    • grizz2202 - May 29, 2012 at 4:10 PM

      I’m sorry, I can’t hear you over the sound of LAST YEAR’S WORLD SERIES. And the other 10 the Cards won before that. You must be a Reds fan, because Cubs fans don’t need to pick a fight to be relevant.

  5. makeham98 - May 27, 2012 at 11:47 PM

    Nah, it’s everyone who doesn’t buy that the overwritten drivel he posts is profound. Which is pretty much everyone.

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