Cardinals right-hander Chris Carpenter has been diagnosed with thoracic outlet syndrome but will still try to pitch this season and wait until the offseason to have surgery, Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com reports.
According to the U.S. National Library of Medicine, thoracic outlet syndrome is "a rare condition that involves pain in the neck and shoulder, numbness and tingling of the fingers and a weak grip. The thoracic outlet is the area between the rib cage and collar bone."
I'm no doctor, but that doesn't sound conducive to pitching.
Carpenter threw a bullpen session -- 40 pitches at about "85 percent" -- on Friday, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
Carpenter didn't want to talk about his diagnosis with the Post-Dispatch, according to the report, but he did see Dr. Gregory Pearl, a specialist in the condition. Carpenter said he felt good, but there are days he doesn't feel as good.
"There's a lot of 'I don't knows' with what's going on. We've done basically all we can do to figure it out," Carpenter told the newspaper. "Some days [the shoulder] doesn't cooperate. Hopefully, we can get it to cooperate more often."
Ian Kennedy, Kenny Rogers and Matt Harrison are some of the notable players who have suffered from thoracic outlet syndrome and returned to pitch afterward. Rays right-hander Alex Cobb was diagnosed with the condition last August and missed the rest of the season.