After missing the 2003 season, he started a tremendous run with the Cardinals, starting in 2004. From 2004-2006, he went 51-18, winning the Cy Young in 2005 and leading the Cardinals to a NL Pennant in 2004, the NLCS in 2005 and a World Series in 2006. But, on opening day in 2007 in St Louis, (against the Mets, where I was in attendance) he would not make another appearance the entire season due to Tommy John surgery, returning towards the end of the 2008 season. He would go 17-4 in 2009 and 16-9 in 2010, before leading the Cardinals to the World Series in 2011.
The story took another turn when it was determined he would likely miss the 2012 season due to thoracic outlet syndrome. But here he is, again, pitching for the Cardinals in the postseason where he has thrived. Before today's game, Carpenter owned a 9-2 career postseason record, including 8 shutout innings in his 2006 World Series appearance against the Tigers and his complete game shutout against former teammate Roy Halliday and the Philadelphia Philles in game 5 of the 2011 NLDS.
He can be considered one of the best postseason season pitchers in the history of the St Louis Cardinals. Thats saying a lot for a team that has been led by Dizzy Dean, Bob Gibson and Joaquin Andujar. I would be very surprised if Carpenter's number 29 isn't retired after his playing career is over. The case could be made better if he continues to pitch the Cardinals to victory this postseason like he did today. He has already made his mark.