Carpenter gets chance to prove himself -

Carpenter gets chance to prove himself

(BaseballStL) -- The organization is really showing a lot of faith in Matt Carpenter with his assignments. There are others on this team that are capable of playing first base. But to replace Lance Berkman in the lineup and hit 5th shows that he really is a different player than he was this time last spring. And as impressive as he was in 2011...that's telling you something.

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He's added power that has never really been there for him. You look at Carpenter's numbers and he's always been phenomenal at getting on base. His OBP is regularly over .400 for a season.

The thing that he hasn't had is power. Now, there are different levels of power. There's no power whatsoever. That's hitting singles. There's moderate power...hitting doubles by driving the ball into gaps. And there's major power...home runs by taking it out of the ballpark.

Carpenter isn't at that last level yet. He won't hit you 20-25 home runs in a season. Maybe one day he could get there, but not yet. The one thing he has done, though, is take himself from a singles guy who slaps the ball to the opposite field to a gap hitter who can get you a decent amount of doubles.

There's a lot more value in someone who can do that as opposed to a singles hitter. You can put him in the middle of the lineup... which is exactly where Matt Carpenter is today.

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