PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Righthander Drew Carpenter had his best performance with the Phillies this season in yesterday’s 5-4 loss to the Padres.

The 26-year-old pitched two shutout innings backing up starter Cliff Lee, allowing just a hit while striking out a pair of Padres (see related story).

“Felt good out there,” he tells KYW Newsradio.  “Everything was working good.  My fastball was overthrown a little bit, but after that first inning I got it under control and felt good the second inning.”

Carpenter began his pro career as a starter, but he has worked out of the bullpen this season in AAA and in his limited work with the Phils.

He says relieving is just fine with him.

“Starting was good, but I got kind of bored those four days, just pitching once every five days,” he recalls.  “And now I’m available every day and I’m more focused, more in the game.   I can play every day now, which is what I would like to do.”

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Carpenter has become quite familiar with the Northeast Extension the last few years, as he went back and forth between AAA Lehigh Valley and the Phillies, making cameo appearances in the bigs in each of the last four seasons.   But Carpenter has never been able to stick with the Phillies, totaling just 10 games, five of which have come in 2011.

But he says his time in the majors has helped him learn one valuable lesson:

“You can’t take a pitch off.  You lollipop one up there, it can be a two-run home run or something.  Just take every pitch like it’s your last one.”

The Phillies’ second-round draft pick in 2006 also is relishing the chance to watch and learn from the standout veteran hurlers that litter the Phils’ pitching staff.

“They know how to get ready.  They know what to pitch certain guys,” Carpenter says.  “Just talking to them about whatever has helped out all us young guys a lot — I know that.  And I know they like helping us out, so that’s even better.”

Carpenter has a 5.40 ERA in 8⅓ innings with the Phillies this season.  At AAA, he pitched in 24 games, going 5-0 with a 1.58 ERA.

Reported by Matt Leon, KYW Newsradio 1060

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