ARLINGTON, TX - OCTOBER 24: Neftali Feliz #30 of the Texas Rangers pitches in the ninth inning during Game Five of the MLB World Series against the St. Louis Cardinals at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington on October 24, 2011 in Arlington, Texas. The Rangers won 4-2. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images)
I get reactionarily anti-reactionary after a baseball game like this one, so check back with me in a month, but as of right now I don't think anybody will be getting fired over this game, and I don't think anybody will have deserved to be. Tony La Russa—whether or not it turns out he had the death grip on the bullpen phone—made some major mistakes in bullpen management, Ron Washington continued to show that if he has any advantage over an average manager it's in his difficult-to-define player-management skills, and the Cardinals came back to Busch Stadium having gotten just the one tantalizing taste of the Ballpark in Arlington's supposed offensive superpowers.
That's what this one came down to, for me—the Cardinals hit .250, got intentionally walked so many times they maintained an OBP over .400, but didn't have four extra-base hits and seemed almost lucky for their two runs.
If I sound like I'm out of things to say already, it's because I am; this was an unpleasant game with unpleasant things in it, and I like my baseball a little less excruciating. The Cardinals come back to Busch Stadium Wednesday with a winnable game on the docket—Colby Lewis against Jaime Garcia, with a chance to become a bona fide World Series Hero instead of a Strangely Disappointing Headcase or whatever it is people wanted Garcia to become in August on the line.
You'll hear these plenty over the next day: The last two times the Cardinals were up 3-2 and in a position to clinch a World Series victory they didn't do it, getting stung by the Twins and Royals, major underdogs both. But what's more important to me, if we're going to predict the future with the Whiteyball tea-leaves, is that the Cardinals team they was down 3-2 and did win opened up Game 6 by taking a 13-0 lead in the sixth inning. I could use a little of that; my heart can't take another nailbiter.