Cardinals ace Chris Carpenter woke up Wednesday morning feeling strong enough to play catch two days earlier than planned. He hopes to return to St. Louis tonight with something just as valuable as his health.

He wants answers on how to maintain it.

Carpenter will travel to Dallas today to have his right shoulder and its nerve trouble examined by Dr. Gregory Pearl, a specialist in thoracic outlet syndrome. The condition comes from pressure or choking of the nerves as they pass from the shoulder to the arm. Symptoms include pain in the neck and shoulder, lack of grip strength, weakness and numbness — all sensations Carpenter had during spring training and at times since.