(BaseballStL) -- Matt Carpenter proved to be a one-man wrecking crew Wednesday night in the Cardinals extra inning victory over the Kansas City Royals, accounting for four of the five Redbird runs through eleven innings.
The third baseman was one base six times, going 5 for 5 with a walk and collecting hits in the first, second, fourth, seventh and eleventh innings.
"Obviously, I feel pretty good," Carpenter said, "It's one of those special nights where things are just falling into place. Sometimes you take the same swing and hit them right at people."
Instead, those five hit fell into hits and manager Mike Matheny believes Carpenter is a different player than he was in April.
"He's seeing the ball better now," he said, "that's really the difference from what you saw early on. You saw him chasing balls out of the zone early in the season a lot more than we'd ever seen. And now he's controlling the strike zone."
His single to center gave the Cardinals their first lead of the game, scoring Mark Ellis. Then in the seventh, he led off the inning with his 15th double of the season. He came around to score the Cardinals second run on Matt Holliday's 29th RBI of the season, now three shy of team leader Allen Craig.
"I see him not trying to do too much," Matheny commented, "looks a lot like what we've seen the last couple of seasons. It's just a real short approach, real short stroke."
In the eleventh inning, Carpenter had another opportunity to give the Cardinals the lead with Peter Bourjos on base and only one out. The ever speedy center fielder picked up his fourth stolen base and then scored on Carpenter's 16th double, second of the game, to give the Redbirds a 3-2 lead.
That double continued Carpenter's perfect offensive night, going 5 for 5 with one walk. He then scored his second run of the game on a single from Allen Craig, giving the Cards a 5-2 lead and taking Adam Wainwright off the hook for the loss.
The Redbirds were able to hold on and finally beat the Royals and win their first game since Saturday.