Chris Carpenter just hasn't had his fastball in the NLCS, and his troubles continued in Game 6, with the St. Louis Cardinals falling behind 5-0 on a second-inning double from Marco Scutaro. His poor fastball command was the primary issue, but it was compounded by Pete Kozma's error on the butcher-boy play from San Francisco Giants pitcher Ryan Vogelsong. Carpenter struck Angel Pagan out but couldn't retire Scutaro.
The Cardinals can score four runs, but they'll need to do it against Ryan Vogelsong, who's completely mystified them through nine NLCS innings so far. After going seven and allowing one run back in Game 2, he's struck out five in two innings in Game 6, leaving the Cardinals befuddled.
If the Cardinals reach the World Series, they're going to have to ask themselves some difficult questions about Chris Carpenter. He simply can't throw his fastball for strikes, and as strikingly normal as his breaking pitches look, there's only so much you can do when your fastball options are to groove one or walk the batter on four pitches. Joe Kelly and Shelby Miller would be the Cardinals' options if he were left off the roster.
For now, though, they just need to win.