Well, this sucks. Basically, Chris Carpenter will most likely be out for the entirety of 2013 season. If you didn’t catch the press conference, here’s what’s what you need to know:
- After having a seemingly normal offseason, he started throwing more intense bullpen sessions. After continuing to feel discomfort in his neck, arm, and shoulder, he called John Mozeliak on Friday to let him know that at least for right now, he will not be able to pitch.
- It is not clear whether or not Carpenter is considering retirement. You would have to think it’s on his mind, but Mozeliak gave no indication that Carpenter will retire, at least in the near future.
- John Mozeliak commented on how they are happy with what they have. They didn’t have Carp in 2012, so it’s really like they’re just going into the 2013 season with the same attitude as a year ago. It does not seem as if they are planning on signing any more free agents before the season begins
- Mike Matheny made several references to the fact that Chris Carpenter is as good of a competitor, role model, and teammate as they come. He will be very much missed in the clubhouse, and it will definitely be a challenge to win without him.
I don’t know what Carpenter’s next step is. If he retires now, he will forfeit his $12.5 million salary for 2013. If he is on DL for a season, the Cardinals will be able to collect insurance on his contract, so it definitely makes sense for him to wait. Regardless, I’m hesitant to say that this is a “huge loss” for the Cardinals. You can be upset and mad but you also have to be realistic — they’re just going to have the same situation they had last year. It is true that they don’t have Kyle Lohse anymore, but you have to be confident in the young crop of players that are coming from what many call the best farm system in the Major Leagues. Their bullpen and bench are improved, and they still have one of the best lineups in the National League. So, while this is definitely extremely disappointing, I am confident that the Cardinals can rebound from this.