The St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Chris Carpenter will likely miss the entire 2013 season with due to continued health issues surrounding his neck, shoulder and arm. This setback is devastating for both Carpenter and the Cardinals as an organization. Considering Carpenter’s age and injury history, retirement could be his next move according to CBS Sports:
Retirement was not mentioned specifically, but it’s obviously on the table because Mozeliak mentioned that Carpenter was worried about having a “normal after-career.” Judging from the demeanor of Mozeliak, manager Mike Matheny and the words they used during the press conference, it was pretty clear both believe Carpenter has thrown his last pitch in the majors.
Carpenter has a 144-94 record with a 3.67 ERA with 33 complete games and 15 shutouts. He has been even better in the post season with a 10-4 record, a 3.0 ERA while helping lead the Cardinals to two World Series Titles. Carpenter’s best year in the big leagues was in 2005 when he won the NL Cy Young award while striking out 204 and posting a 2.83 ERA with 21 wins and five losses.
Unfortunately, Carpenter’s career was put on hold more times than once due to injuries that would keep him out for extended periods of time. He started only 13 games in 2002, one game in 2007, four games in 2008 and, and three last season. His injuries have included a torn shoulder labrum, a torn unbar-collateral ligament, and thoracic outlet syndrome.
Without Carpenter, the Cardinals will have a staff that features Adam Wainwright and Jake Westbrook. Lance Lynn could be a third or fourth starter and they’ll have Jamie Garcia when he finishes recovering from his shoulder injury. They’ll also have a few younger guys like Shelby Miller and Joe Kelly who may also see some time in the rotation.