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Matt Carpenter raises eyebrows in 8-7 loss

He may be wearing number 92 and have only two years of professional experience under his belt, but Matt Carpenter is forcing the Cardinals brass to to take a good, hard look at him.

Thanks to a 3-for-3 performance Tuesday against the Red Sox, the 6-foot-3, 210-pound infielder is batting .474 for for the spring with 19 at bats under his belt. He's got six RBIs and three triples so far this spring, getting extra exposure at third base because of injuries to Nick Punto and David Freese.

It's doubtful that Carpenter has a chance to make the major league roster -- even with the injuries to Punto and Freese -- because he's never played above the Class AA level. But, hopefully, he's on the right track to the big leagues.

The Cardinals led 7-3 in the sixth inning of their Tuesday game before the second stringers came in and gave up five unanswered runs to lose the game 8-7.

Six St. Louis batsmen had a pair of hits each to compliment Carpenter's big day. They were Ryan Theriot, Albert Pujols, Matt Holliday, Lance Berkman, Nick Stavinoha and Gerald Laird. The Cardinals were 4-for-14 with runners in scoring position and stranded 13 runners on base.

More concerning is the fact that starting pitcher Jaime Garcia was roughed up in his appearance. Garcia gave up seven hits and three walks in three innings pitched to allow three runners to dent the plate.