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Carp's Rehab Starts GDT; UPDATED: Will pitch Wednesday

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  • Carp's Rehab Starts GDT; UPDATED: Will pitch Wednesday

    We have a GDT for just about everything else -- why not this?

    The Cardinals have decided pitcher Chris Carpenter is past the point of getting his arm healthy and is set to begin getting it ready.

    Carpenter, who hasn't made a major-league start since opening day 2007, will begin a rehab assignment Sunday, and that starts the countdown for his return to the Cardinals' rotation in early August. The righthander and former Cy Young Award winner will start for the Cardinals' Class AA affiliate in Springfield, Mo.

    "Based on how he has thrown in Florida, it seemed like a good place to start," general manager John Mozeliak said. "He felt that he was ready to face a higher level. … (Coach) Derek Lilliquist has said Carp is ready for the next challenge."

    Carpenter missed all but one start last season because of elbow pain that resulted in ligament replacement surgery — Tommy John surgery — a year ago this month. The righthander had one setback on his recovery, a stiffness and soreness a month ago that sent him on a brief tour of doctor visits for an explanation. Since then, he has thrown well in simulated games at the Cardinals' spring training facility in Jupiter, Fla.



    He threw well enough Monday in a simulated game that the Cardinals decided it's time to send him out on a rehab assignment. The assignment can last a maximum of 30 days before Carpenter has to be activated.

    Pitching coach Dave Duncan does not expect Carpenter to take all 30 days available to him.

    "I hope not," Duncan said. "What you do is you watch the steps that he's taking. … You evaluate him as he goes."

    Carpenter's target for Sunday's start will be 65 to 70 pitches. He'll build up his arm strength from there, likely targeting at least 90 pitches in a minor-league game before getting consideration for his big-league return. The Cardinals will condition Carpenter as a starter, Mozeliak said, and the plan is to have him return to St. Louis as a member of the rotation. How he fares at building his arm strength will either cement that plan or lead the Cardinals to consider Carpenter for relief duty first.

    "He's healthy and he's building up his pitch count," Mozeliak said. "He just needs to fine-tune to be game-ready. He said he feels strong. Velocity is there. His breaking pitches are all there. It's just about getting him the command and the overall package he needs to face major-league hitters."

    A day after Carpenter makes his first start since a failed rehab assignment last July, Adam Wainwright will meet with team doctors to determine whether he can begin throwing off the mound. Wainwright, the proxy ace in Carpenter's absence, has been out since early June with a ruptured pulley in his right middle finger.

    Wainwright said his recovery schedule could put him back in the rotation by the first or second week of August.

    The two mending aces could return in rapid succession.

    "You add those two guys pitching the way they're capable of pitching and it's certainly a plus," Duncan said. "That's why you try to get them to that point where they are ready to be as good as they can be. You don't want them doing their rehab up here if you can help it."

    Said Mozeliak as he watched Kyle Lohse, the club's rotation rescuer while the two stars have been out, pitch Thursday: "It would be huge, assuming that they are able to come back at the level we're expecting. It's a good lift for us. … This whole year has been based on getting ourselves healthy and we haven't accomplished it. However, we have still stayed in it."
    http://www.stltoday.com/stltoday/spo...3?OpenDocument
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  • #2
    Rehabbing in an actual game instead of a side session is a good thing. It's sometimes hard to tell where these guys are from what the team says, but this quantifies it. Hopefully Monday morning we will get some good news.
    Dude. Can. Fly.

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    • #3
      65-70 pitches in his first rehab outing? In AA?

      Yikes. Either he's way more healthy than anyone who's ever had Tommy John surgery, or he's rushing things.
      I like cheese.

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      • #4
        Originally posted by triggercut1 View Post
        65-70 pitches in his first rehab outing? In AA?

        Yikes. Either he's way more healthy than anyone who's ever had Tommy John surgery, or he's rushing things.
        Josh Johnson of the Marlins was the starting pitcher in a big league game less than one full year after his TJ surgery. He threw close to 100 pitches.
        RIP Dave

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        • #5
          please oh please oh please...
          Of course you do.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by Brummerball View Post
            Josh Johnson of the Marlins was the starting pitcher in a big league game less than one full year after his TJ surgery. He threw close to 100 pitches.
            His return, after the club said he'd miss all of 2008, is pretty remarkable...

            Like you said, he was throwing quite few pitches in his extended spring training outings and simulated games...

            "Can't buy what I want because it's free...
            Can't buy what I want because it's free..."
            -- Pearl Jam, from the single Corduroy

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            • #7
              I hope he can contribute something to this club, but I can't help but to be concerned that he's being pushed a bit too fast.
              Make America Great For Once.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Brummerball View Post
                Josh Johnson of the Marlins was the starting pitcher in a big league game less than one full year after his TJ surgery. He threw close to 100 pitches.
                ...what's Josh Johnson's history of arm problems?

                I'm sure there are other guys who have had shorter TJ recovery stints, but I'm not sure any of them are guys who've been shut down for two full seasons in recovery from a torn labrum.
                I like cheese.

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                • #9
                  It's been a year, right? That seems pretty much in line with most these days...

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by backstop View Post
                    It's been a year, right? That seems pretty much in line with most these days...
                    Pretty sure his surgery was in July of last year so I'm not sure why anyone thinks he's being overly rushed when 12 months is about normal for a guy to be returning.
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                    • #11
                      Courtesy of Cards Talk, your options for following along --

                      http://web.minorleaguebaseball.com/m...waaax_spraax_1

                      or the audio

                      http://www.jock987.net/

                      "Can't buy what I want because it's free...
                      Can't buy what I want because it's free..."
                      -- Pearl Jam, from the single Corduroy

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                      • #12
                        cool. I might listen to this...

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                        • #13
                          10 pitch first inning for Carp.

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                          • #14
                            1 BB 1 K in second inning. Had a DP ball bobbled by the shortstop, but held them scoreless.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              2 IP, 1 K, 1 BB.

                              Looks like he has having a little trouble throwing strikes.

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