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Chris Carpenter declines season-ending surgery, will keep pitching

Jun 29, 2012, 6:43 PM EDT

Chris Carpenter Getty Images

Chris Carpenter got the diagnosis he didn’t want to hear Friday: thoracic outlet syndrome. Still, he intends to forgo surgery and attempt to work through the nerve problem.

Kenny Rogers, Jarrod Saltalamacchia and Noah Lowry are a few of the notable major leaguers to have undergone surgery for thoracic outlet syndrome, a compression of the nerves that can lead to pain in the neck and arm and loss of feeling in the fingers. Tampa Bay’s Alex Cobb was diagnosed last year and missed the rest of the season. Surgery can involve the removal of a rib to take pressure of the nerves, but it doesn’t always.

Carpenter’s plan appears to be to continue his comeback and then undergo surgery in the offseason. He threw a bullpen session today and plans to throw again on Monday. Even if he does  manage to successfully complete a rehab assignment and make it back to the majors, the odds would seem to be against him lasting the season. Still, as long as he can’t make things worth by trying, it’s admirable that he’ll give it a go.

  1. jumbro10 - Jun 29, 2012 at 6:52 PM

    How could he ever tell his son if he didnt man up and gut it out?

  2. randygnyc - Jun 29, 2012 at 7:06 PM

    This is a man who wants to earn his money. We’ll know sooner rather than later if it’s possible.

  3. okwhitefalcon - Jun 30, 2012 at 12:25 AM

    Kudos to Carp for trying to pitch through this but I just don’t think the Cards can count on him (or Garcia) this season for any sustained success or solution.

    The front office definitely has decisions to make and they won’t be easy, trading a top prospect for a rental isn’t going to happen and any kind of help who’s under control is going to cost and cost big time.

  4. okwhitefalcon - Jun 30, 2012 at 12:21 PM

    It seems as though the Memphis shuttle is active (again) this morning with bullpen moves and eminent (literal) shakes on the horizon

    Eduardo Sanchez and Sam Freeman optioned with Maikel Cleto and some dude named Barrett Browning being recalled to STL.

    I was really hoping they could bet the pen straightened out without going outside of the organization
    but it looks more and more like Mo’s going to have to get on the bat phone if this latest move doesn’t solidify the Gas House Gang that is the Cards relief corps.

  5. rooney24 - Jun 30, 2012 at 2:35 PM

    But, will waiting until the offseason mean his isn’t ready for Spring Training? It is admirable that he tries to work through it. But, if waiting will delay when he is ready in 2013, with no guarantee that he can pitch this year, then I don’t think he should wait.

    • okwhitefalcon - Jun 30, 2012 at 3:51 PM

      No idea really, still not sure why they waited this long to seek a specialists opinion and get a speciifc diagnosis.

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