O Cardinal wins, Cardinal wins, wherefore art thou Cardinal wins?
Deny thy scoring and refuse thy hits
Or, if thou wilt not, be but scorned, my team
And you'll no longer lead the division.
[Aside] Shall I start Grich? For his bat we will miss.
'Tis but the Pirates that are the enemy:
Thou art thyself, though not a healthy team.
What's a Cardinal? It is nor bat, nor hits
Nor arm, nor pitch, but the whole of parts
Created by these men. O, there will be more games.
What's in a win? That which we call scoring,
but preventing runs would smell as sweet;
And the Cardinals would, were they not injury prone
Maintain that win percentage which they built
And take that title. O Veebers, keep your hope
And for this game, which is no part of thee,
It was a rough day. After losing the end of the suspended game from last night, the Cardinals had a roughly 40-minute break before taking the field again. Lance Lynn squared off against Anthony DeSclafani, and the game started on a high note. In the first inning, Matt Carpenter doubled, followed by a single by Stephen Piscotty and a single by Jason Heyward to score Marp. 1-0 Cardinals. Unfortunately, with two on and no one out, the Cardinals could not manage to push another run across. DeSclafani struck out Mark Reynolds, Brandon Moss, and Kolten Wong to end the inning.
Lance Lynn did not look sharp today, particularly in the early innings. He had a lot of trouble finding the strike zone and was constantly falling behind on hitters. He managed to get through four innings unscathed, but ran into trouble in the fifth. After giving up consecutive singles to Eugenio Suarez and Tucker Barnhart, Lynn got the pitcher and Billy Hamilton out. Noted power hitter Skip Schumaker, batting second today, came to the plate and unloaded on a fastball. The ball carried out of the park for a home run. 3-1 Reds. Those were all the runs the Reds would need, but they kept going anyway. A Joey Votto sacrifice fly in the seventh made the score 4-1, and Barhnart drove in Jay Bruce in the eighth to score the Reds' 5th run.
The Cardinals did have some chances to score - particularly in the seventh inning. Randal Grichuk pinch hit for Kolten Wong (who'd struck out twice and looked lost at the plate), and drew a walk. He advanced to second on a wild pitch. Tony Cruz hit into a ground ball out, but Greg Garcia walked. With two on and one out, and the pitcher's spot due up, Mike Matheny brought in Jhonny Peralta to pinch hit. I liked that move - but Peralta grounded into an inning-ending double play, which seems to be his forte lately. SIGH.
1. Lynn's final line somehow does not reflect how not great he looked today: 6 IP, 3 R, 4 H, 3 BB, 3 SO. Ordinarily, other than the walks, we'd call this a pretty solid outing. Still, the strikeouts are down and the walks are up, and it seems to be a continuing trend. I don't really know how to explain it, but I'm not at all convinced that Lance Lynn is healthy.
2. On a positive note, Greg Garcia - playing shortstop today - made a fantastic play in the third inning, ranging to his left on a ball up the middle and throwing a perfect strike to first base. I think he's earned a roster spot for the playoffs (over and instead of Kozma).
3. Adam Wainwright gave an interview during the game in which he said that he's got one more "test" to pass with respect to coming back and that he'll know more in about 10 days. Still think it would be a terrible idea to put him on the post season roster. Still think it's going to happen anyway.
4. The Cardinals will try to right the ship and avoid the sweep tomorrow as Michael Wacha takes on Rasiel Iglesias at 12:10 p.m. CT.