MLB Playoffs: Cardinals’ postseason X-Factors
Sep 27, 2015; St. Louis, MO, USA; St. Louis Cardinals third basemanMatt Carpenter
(13) is congratulated by teammates after hitting a solo home run during the seventh inning of a baseball game against the Milwaukee Brewers at Busch Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Scott Kane-USA TODAY Sports
Wow, what a season for Carpenter. If you would have told me he was going to finish the season two home runs shy of 30, I probably would have told you that you were dreaming and that he’d be lucky if he got 20. Kudos to Matt Holliday for working with Carpenter (according to Derrick Goold) and getting him to elevate his swing a bit to get more loft on the ball as despite a dismal month and a half in May/June Carpenter finished the year with a slash of .272/.365/.505 and an OPS of .871-Carpenter also finished with 75 extra base-hits (28 home runs, 44 doubles, 3 triples) while driving in 84 runs.
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Talk about a career year. Carpenter really established himself as the anchor for this offense in the second half as JHonny Peralta started to fade. Carpenter also has a knack for being a good postseason hitter as he owns a .244/.303/.454 slash line with five homers and eight doubles, four of those homers coming last season. Carpenter’s low average is a result of one bad series against Pittsburgh in 2013. Like Heyward, should Carpenter be his normal self in the postseason it will be a good omen for the Cardinals’ postseason chances.