The Cardinals have been carried by their powerful offense this season, and most of the praise belongs to the heavy lifters. Matt Holliday, Yadier Molina, David Freese and Allen Craig have been crucial to the Cardinals’ success, with each player hitting 19 or more home runs while getting on base at a rate north of .360. Jon Jay and Carlos Beltran have also provided a ton of value with their bats, while gaining plenty of praise from the media. Matt Carpenter, however is one player who doesn’t get nearly enough credit for his contributions.
Carpenter will never wow you with his power, and he doesn’t possess a lot of speed. But the man can hit. He has posted a .297/.364/.486 triple-slash line this season, which is good for a .850 OPS. He has been the ultimate “glue guy” in the Cardinals’ lineup, spending time at three of the four infield positions and two of the three outfield spots. He has given Mike Matheny the luxury of being able to give one of his big boppers the day off without his offense missing a beat. While Allen Craig and David Freese have both missed time with injuries, Carpenter has been a constant presence. Even though he has accumulated only 1.4 Wins Above Replacement, Carpenter’s versatility and consistency off the bench adds value beyond what his numbers can measure.
About the Author
Written by David Gorsky
I'm a lifelong sports fan with a particular interest in baseball. I'm a proponent of using SABRmetrics to find a player's true value. I recently graduated from the University of Virginia and I'm ready to start my career in sports media. I can be reached at davidgorsky(at)outlook.com.