The Best Five Starting Pitchers of the NL Central
While we are all sitting around waiting on the start of baseball season, it is impossible not to ponder who the very best is in the NL Central. I guess it really comes from a love for Fantasy baseball that one would sit around thinking about who the very best in the NL Central is. I found myself in such a situation that I felt compelled to share my opinion with whoever might take the time to read this. I do not want to confuse anyone out there. Please do not interpret these pitchers as the best pitchers in the NL Central, but rather my opinion of who the best are. For example, if I were starting a team with unlimited salary and no one to answer to, these are the starting pitchers that I would want on me team.
Chris Carpenter – St. Louis Cardinals
Carpenter is easily one of the better pitchers in the NL Central. Racking up seventeen wins last season is just one of his eye popping statistics that this veteran right hander has built up over his time in the majors. He started out with Toronto but after six average seasons with the Blue Jays he found himself in a St. Louis Cardinal uniform. Carpenter’s first three seasons as a Cardinal were very productive racking up wins of 15, 21 and 15 wins in 2004, 2005, and 2006 respectively. All was going well for Carpenter until he was hampered by injury in 2007 and 2008. It appeared as if Carpenter’s career may have been over until his resurgence in 2009 where he posted a 17 and 4 record with a 2.24 ERA. Those kind of numbers are certainly Cy Young Caliber but the award went to the young SF Giants pitcher Lincecum. There is no doubt in my mind that Carpenters performance in the 2009 season put him as one of the top pitchers on my list. As with any veteran pitcher, with the exception of Randy Johnson, Carpenter must be careful of being injured. If Carpenter can stay healthy this season I predict that he could easily put up numbers just as he did last year. Especially when you take into consideration the team that the Cardinals have been able to put together you know that the run support will be there for their starting pitchers. Carpenter is easily one of the best pitchers in the NL Central.
Adam Wainwright – St. Louis Cardinals
Without trying to sound like a Cardinals fan, I would never want anyone to make that mistake; my next top pitcher to come out of the NL Central is Adam Wainwright also of the St. Louis Cardinals. Wainwright makes my list of top starting pitchers because of his performance last season as the Cardinals tough second starter. At almost 30 years of age, Wainwright is far from a rookie. Although, he has only been a consistent starter in the majors for the last 3 years, Wainwright has put together 3 pretty good seasons for the St. Louis Cardinals. Last season put Wainwright on my top list as he racked up 19 wins with 8 losses and a 2.63 ERA. Pretty good for a second guy right? On most other teams Wainwright would be their number one starter and for that reason he makes my top starter list.