lost amid the big hullabalooo was this: chris carpenter pitched stoically last night. early on, when the cards wasted opportunities and the astros had men all over the bases, he contained the damage and fended off a demoralizing early deficit. the cardinals scratched out a scant one-run lead for him, and he kept if safe for four innings until undone in the 7th by an error, a hit-run dribbler, and a bloop home run. our ace came up with a big game when we had to have one; nice work, chris. he featured his curveball, a troublesome pitch lately, quite a bit last night; got hurt with it early but then started to keep them down. it showed in carp's line; he struck out the side in the 5th and equaled his highest strikeout total (6) since early september.
carpenter must've majored in theater or something. he started all of these games for st louis this season:
may 2: cards trail the reds 9-3 entering top 9th, and still lag 9-4 with two outs; sanders singles, edmonds homers, grud'k reaches on an error, mabry homers, and the cardinals complete a historic rally and win 10-9.
august 7: cardinals trail atlanta 3-1 entering bottom 9th. nunez singles, taguchi singles, luna singles to load 'em up; seabol lines out, then eckstein whacks one over the wall for a game-winning grand slam.
august 19: cards behind 4-0 vs giants entering bottom 9th. mabry 2b, gooch 1b, molina HR makes it 4-3; j-rod singles, eck bunts him over, nunez singles him to 3d; but pujols pops out for the 2d out. edmonds mashes a double off the wall to score two runs, and the cardinals win 5-4.
and then last night's game.