St. Louis Update: Carpenter Suffers Hamstring Injury
March 1, 2011 Leave a comment
St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Chris Carpenter left his Spring Training debut appearance today with what has been reported as a left hamstring injury (ESPN News Link).
Carpenter said after that game that he doesn’t believe his injury is significant, but it caused enough concern for him to be pulled after completing 2 2/3 innings of work. The team is already without pitcher Adam Wainwright, who underwent Tommy John surgery on Monday and is out for the next 12-15 months while he recovers.
Last year, Carpenter posted a 16-9 record with a 3.22 ERA, and is the true ace of this rotation with the absence of Wainwright. However, at age 35 and with a long list of injuries on his resume, there is considerable concern in Cardinals camp that Carpenter might not be able to carry the load he has been asked to in the past. Last year, Carpenter recorded 235 innings, the first year in which he’s eclipsed the 200 innings threshold since 2006.
As we covered last week, there is a plethora of pitching in the National League Central. The Cardinals have a strong enough line-up to compete in the division, even without Wainwright’s 20 wins from the previous season. But, this team will be lost if Carpenter were to go down at any point during the 2011 campaign. So, while Carpenter has said the injury isn’t too worrisome currently, any injury to the injury-plagued righty should cause ample concern in what is turning out to be a bleak perspective on a complicated 2011 Cardinals team.