Drew Carpenter was at one time a highly ranked pitching prospect for the Phillies. He has been called up frequently as an injury replacement over the past couple of seasons. Recently, Carpenter was passed up by pitching prospects like Vance Worley, and now Mike Stutes in a bullpen role. However, Drew is finding his way in 2011 as a bullpen arm for the Triple-A Ironpigs.
So far this season Carpenter has an ERA of 1.65 over 43.2 innings pitched. His transition to a full-time bullpen arm has been smooth and simple. In fact, he has not given up a run since May 30th in his bullpen appearances. The great part about this right hander is that he has been called on to pitch multiple innings on many occasions, which he has had no problem doing. Aside from his ERA, he has also struck out 48 batters, while walking only eight so far this season, and he has held oppenents to a .206 batting average. These numbers are much improved from last season, where Drew went 8-11 as a starter with an ERA over four. His strikeouts were down and he seemed to have control issues at times.
Carpenter has had a few chances in Phialdelphia, unfortunantly he has not been able to make the most of them. Last season Drew got a call up for one game, where he pitched only one inning allowing three runs before being sent back to triple-A. In 2009 he recorded his only MLB win, but in a short stint for the Phillies he threw 5.2 innings giving up 7 runs. Carpenter didn't last long in 2009 as his numbers gave him an 11.12 ERA, sending him back to the minors. But now it appears to be different.
He has the confidence of a bullpen pitcher, taking the mound in Lehigh and easily blowing through the opposing lineups. He has rarely got in to trouble, and could be destined for a September call-up. This time with an aging bullpen in Philadelphia there may be room for Carpenter in the future, and at 26 years old the time would have to be now. Despite being passed up and forgotten by most, Carpenter has rallied back and appears ready for one last chance in Philadelphia before his time here is done. If that chance does not come, there is surely a team willing to take a chance on a pitchers dominating at the Triple-A level.
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