It's crazy; the Cardinals are going to end up winning somewhere between 88 and 91 games, but at no point in the season has the team felt like a 'good' one. A lot of that has to do with the fact that a) With a run differential of +17, it's actually not a very good one and b) As a pitching and defense team, the Cardinals very rarely blow a team out and every game is close. Still, and I've been very wrong about this before, but this just doesn't -feel- like a team that goes very far in the playoffs.
Anyways, to the game: the scoring opened in the bottom of the 4th inning, when Luis Valbuena doubled and Logan Watkins was intentionally walked to bring up Jake Arrieta, the pitcher. On an 0-2 pitch, Arrieta tripled into right field, scoring two runs for the Cubbies.
The Cardinals got one back in the top of the 5th when Yadier Molina and Oscar Taveras both singled to open the frame. Peter Bourjos grounded out to second, but with his speed, he avoided the double play and Yadier moved to third. With Lackey batting, Bourjos attempted to steal second. Welington Castillo threw the ball away, and Yadier raced home to score the lone Cardinals run of the night.
The Cubs would tack on one more in the bottom of the 8th with everything happening with two outs. After a Luis Valbuena groundout and Welington Castillo strikeout, Ryan Kalish doubled, and then someone called a Chris Valaika singled.
The Cardinals mounted a little bit of a fight in the 9th when Jhonny Peralta and Yadier Molina both singled with two outs. Tommy Pham replaced Molina to run, and Oscar Taveras stepped up to the plate as the winning run. However, he would weakly ground out to second to end the game.
Three Stars of the Game (by WPA)
- John Lackey (+0.64) - 6.2 IP, 2 ER, 8 SO, 4 BB. Wasn't sure sharp, but pitched more than well enough
- Yadier Molina (+0.44) - 2 for 4
- Seth Maness (+0.36) - Got Jorge Soler to ground out with two men on base in the 7th
Three ...not Stars of the Game (by WPA)
- Kolten Wong (-0.139) - 0 for 4, 1 K
- Matt Holliday (-0.117) - 0 for 4, 2 K
- Matt Adams (-0.81) - 0 for 4, 2 K
our offense is poop