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Day after, Carpenter feeling good

Day after, Carpenter feeling good

ST. LOUIS -- A day after his first rehabilitation start, Chris Carpenter still wasn't happy with his command from the night before. But he felt good, and on the day after, that's what a rehabbing hurler is looking for.

Carpenter allowed one hit but walked four over four scoreless innings for Double-A Springfield on Sunday. He had been pitching simulated games at the Cardinals' complex in Jupiter, Fla., while he tries to comeback from Tommy John reconstructive elbow surgery.

"I feel good," Carpenter said Monday. "I was happy with the way my arm feels today. I'll throw a [bullpen session] tomorrow and see what happens. I didn't think it was going to feel that much different than last Monday did, and it was definitely different. I was fired up a little bit."

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For many recuperating players, the day after is just as important as the day of. In fact, when Carpenter first felt discomfort in his elbow last spring, he reported no problems when he pitched. He only had discomfort afterward. So it was a relief for Carpenter when his arm felt normal on Monday.

"He's generally pleased with how he felt," manager Tony La Russa said. "He was not pleased with his delivery at times, which is to be expected."

Carpenter is a well-known perfectionist, so it was little surprise to anyone that he was frustrated with his results on Sunday. However, he saw his mistakes as correctable, and he intends to fix them soon. His next start is scheduled for Friday, likely at Triple-A Memphis. It is still hoped that Carpenter will not need all the allotted 30 days for his rehabilitation.

"If my command was better, if I don't walk four guys, I have a chance to go a lot further than I did with 63 pitches, or whatever I threw," Carpenter said. "I'll know. I'll know when I'm throwing the ball where it needs to go and when I'm making pitches the way I should."

Matthew Leach is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

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