According to Joe Strauss of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Chris Carpenter will start throwing from a mound later this week. It will be the first time since March that Carpenter has thrown from a mound. Carpenter was sidelined with a nerve issue affecting his pitching shoulder.
Carpenter started throwing from flat ground last month, and the team says his progress has been very positive. He is now ready to make the next step in his rehab and recovery. The Cardinals have not yet released the exact day Carpenter will start throwing bullpen sessions or how many pitches he will be allowed to throw, but it is expected to start later this week.
The injury was diagnosed during Spring Training of this year and Carpenter was initially placed on the 15-day disabled list. It became apparent quickly though that Carpenter would miss more time than originally thought.
Carpenter was 11-9 last year with a 3.45 ERA. He came on strong toward the end of the year and helped the Cardinals close the gap between themselves and the Braves. The Cardinals would end up making the play-offs and went on to win the World Series. Carpenter was 4-0 in the 2011 play-offs including two wins in the World Series.
This season, the Cardinals got off to a hot start despite missing their ace and watching Adam Wainwright struggle. They’ve fallen of since then. Currently, St. Louis is 31-31, three games back of first place. The team hopes to get Carpenter back soon so they can turn things around.
Carpenter is excited to move forward with his rehab:
“It’s one thing to throw in the outfield and another to get on a mound and throw on a downward plane,” he said. “I know I can throw long toss. Now we have to find out about the other.”
Carpenter has had setbacks on the road to recovery, so the Cardinals are cautiously optimistic about his progress. However, Carpenter is moving in the right direction.