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Matt Carpenter sets Yankees franchise record amid hot start as he stays rooted in Christ

New Yankees infielder Matt Carpenter had a late start to the 2022 MLB season, but he’s doing his best to make up for it in a hurry.

He’s recorded 13 RBIs on eight hits so far through 10 games (24 at-bats) with New York, and six of those hits have been home runs. Of all the greats who have worn the famed pinstripes, Carpenter is the first player in franchise history to have hit six home runs in his first 10 games with the team.

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Two of Carpenter’s homers came in New York’s 18-4 romp against the Chicago Cubs on Sunday, giving the Yankees the series sweep and their MLB-best 44th win of the season. Carpenter’s big day at the plate also included a walk and a double.

Carpenter signed with the Yankees on May 26 and made his debut with the team later that day. The 7-2 win against the Tampa Bay Rays was the first MLB game he’d played in all season, as he had previously been in the minor leagues with the Texas Rangers organization.

The 36-year-old three-time All-Star signed a minor-league contract with the Rangers in March. He originally became a free agent after the St. Louis Cardinals — the only team he’d played for since his MLB debut in 2011 — declined his option for this season. He managed only three homers and a .169 batting average in 130 games played a year ago.

“It’s just been a lot of really good at-bats,” Yankees manager Aaron Boone said about Carpenter’s resurgence. “Tremendous play down there at third (base). Really impressive. I think you’re seeing the fruits of some labor that he put in over the winter time. … He’s been such a joy to be around since he’s gotten here.”

Carpenter is also glad to be in New York and relieved that his time away from MLB is over.

“I told [the Yankees’ front office], if they want me to load the bags on the plane, I’ll do it,” Carpenter said after being signed, according to MLB Network reporter Bryan Hoch.

The veteran leadership Carpenter is now adding to the Yankees’ clubhouse was developed during his time with the Cardinals as he spent time around leaders and Christ-followers like pitcher Adam Wainwright and current manager Oliver Marmol.

Carpenter describes himself as a “Christian” on his Twitter bio and lists the Bible verse Matthew 19:26 on his Instagram bio. He also has that verse tattooed on the inside of his right arm.

“My personal relationship with Christ is what I lean on in all struggles and hardships but also my successes,” Carpenter told WhatChristiansWantToKnow.com while with the Cardinals. “Jesus is the reason for all of it, giving Him all the glory for the things that happen in my life and for what’s to come.”

 

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In 2018, Carpenter recorded a video with Sports Spectrum in which he told his story of baseball and faith in Christ.

“There was so much relief in [surrendering my life to Christ],” Carpenter said in the video. “From that point on, literally, like it changed me.”

He continued later: “The game of baseball I have no control over. The game of life I have no control over. All I have is my faith. If you’re looking for some solid ground or some rock to hold onto, there’s only one way and that’s through Him.”

Carpenter will seek to continue to grow deeper in his faith as he aims to continue his hot start with perhaps the most recognizable team in all of baseball. New York’s next game is Tuesday at 7:05 p.m. ET as the Yankees begin a three-game home series with the Rays.

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