I’ll get back to politics/policy, history, art, music, and the rest later. This morning I’m enjoying not only the fact that the Cardinals have recovered and made it to October, but that Chris Carpenter last night reminded everyone what a terrific pitcher he is.
Carpenter has had a tough season. He started 1 – 7, and for the most part, his teammates didn’t give him much in the way of run support. In his 9 losses over the season, the offense either didn’t score or scored only 1 run in 7 of those. Cy Young couldn’t have won with that little offense behind him.
But his teammates stepped up last night, staking him to a 5-0 lead in the first inning.
Carpenter was excellent. A complete-game shutout, only 2 hits and 1 walk, 11 strikeouts, and total command throughout.
The Cardnal fan in me loves that they are in the post-season, but the basebal fan in me really loves watching this kind of performance.
Before the game, talking with reporters, Carpenter responded to a question about the win-or-go-home situation the Cardinals were in last night. He responded, “Don’t worry; I’ll handle this.”
Ironically, this marvelous performance came during the least exciting game of the night. Four teams – Cardinals, Braves, Red Sox, and Rays – went into the night battling for the wild card in their respective divisions. The Cardinals cruised. The Braves went into extra innings against the Phillies and came up short. The Red Sox completed an historic implosion and lost, 1986-style, when their closer couldn’t hold a lead with two outs in the 9th against one of the worst teams in professional baseball. Three minutes later, the Rays finished fighting back from a 7-run deficit and walked off their home field in the 12th winners against the Yankees.
Cardinals/Phils begins Saturday. BTW, the Cardinals are the only NL team with a winning record against Philadelphia. We’ll see . . . .