Unlike most broadcasters, Bobby Valentine's usually willing to call them as he sees them, and here's his take on Chris Carpenter tonight: "This is very mediocre stuff that Carpenter's featuring."
In two innings, Carpenter has given up four hits and two walks, and he's lucky to have given up only two runs. He didn't throw a curveball until his 34th pitch; during the regular season, he typically threw between 15 and 25 curveballs per game.
If the Cardinals lose this game by a run or two, Tony La Russa will be forever second-guessed for letting Carpenter start Game 7 on short rest ... particularly considering how poorly Carpenter pitched on short rest in Game 2 of the Division Series, when he lasted only three innings against the Phillies.
The decision hasn't blown up in La Russa's lap quite yet, though. Carpenter escaped the top of the second inning by retiring Elvis Andrus on a grounder to the mound, and so the score remains Cardinals 2, Rangers 2.