Here's the thing: it's late. On a Saturday. It's after midnight central time. I'm drunk and there are like 15 people who are going to read this. Plus I'm depressed about losing. So I'm just gonna skip the cutesy poem this evening and get right to it. I don't think anyone will actually mind too much, anyway.
So, okay. Mike Leake took the mound tonight against Nathan Karns. Guys, I don't know who Nathan Karns is; YOU don't know who Nathan Karns is. All we know is this dude is at least somewhat legit because he's allowed to start a major league game. Beyond that, we're all thinking: we should win this game! Sigh.
Mike Leake had a very bad start. After getting the first two batters, he loaded the bases on walks and singles and stuff. Dae-ho Lee popped a base hit through the infield to score two. 2-0 Mariners. Adam Lind, who I am pretty sure is at least cousins with Brandon Moss, followed with a base hit up the middle. 3-0 Mariners. I was drinking a diet Coke and I mixed the second half with a little bit of Captain Morgan.
Bad things continued into the second inning. Ketel
One Marte and Leonys Martin hit consecutive singles, then Leake intentionally walked Robinson Cano to get to Nelson Cruz. Cruz hit a hard ground ball to third base and unfortunately Jhonny Peralta could not field it cleanly. What could have been a double play ball, or at least one out, produced zero outs and a 4-0 score. I switched to vodka and club soda. The very next play featured Matt Carpenter unable to cleanly field a sure double play ball. He got the runner at first, but another scored. 5-0 Mariners. I added a little more vodka to my glass.
To be fair, the Cardinals staged a half assed comeback. They scored in the third after a base hit by Kolten Wong, followed by consecutive walks to Matt Carpenter and Aledmys Diaz. With the bases loaded, Matt Holliday hit a ball up the middle to score Wong. Carpenter was held at third. 5-1 now. Stephen Piscotty hit a line drive to Cano (that I thought was a hit at first) to end the inning. I sipped my drink, feeling defeated.
With one out in the fourth inning and a runner on first base, Mike Matheny pulled Leake in favor of Tyler Lyons. Lyons threw two pitches, induced a double play and promptly dropped the mic.
The Cardinals then did that thing they do where they give me hope that they will win game and then they pulled the rug out from under me and laughed as I fell on my ass. In the top of the fifth, Tommy Pham (getting the rare start in center field) was hit by a pitch and Wong singled. A fan ran on the field during Matt Carpenter's at bat and it was damn hilarious because he flew out to left center and you saw the left fielder and the center fielder and then suddenly this third person appeared on the screen. After the chaos subsided, Diaz hit a THREE RUN HOME RUN to bring the Cardinals within one run of tying the game. I made another drink. Piscotty doubled with two outs, but was stranded on second base. I squeezed some lime in there and chugged.
Other stuff happened after that, but the bottom line did not change. The Mariners won this game, 5-4.
1. Tyler Lyons, amirite? He was very, very, very, very good tonight. 4 2/3 IP, 0 R, 1 H, 2 BB, 4 K. And the Ks - man, they were a beaut! Here are some samples, courtesy of @vanhicklestein:
Another. pic.twitter.com/cYy84k2PFm— vhs (@VanHicklestein) June 26, 2016
I was thinking to myself, which starter is he better than? I'm not sure he's absolutely, 100% better than anyone in the current rotation, but he's at least AS good and it makes you wonder why we spent a fuckload of money and years on Mike Leake.
2. I am having a hard time understanding the lineup and defensive placement tonight. With the DH, I probably would have had Holliday in left, Wong at second, and either Peralta or Carpenter as DH. Now, Holliday probably needed at least a partial day off as much as those guys did, but, like, Wong is not an outfielder! WHY ARE WE PRETENDING OTHERWISE. Wong did do pretty good in left field, but just because a bad process led to good results does not mean it should ever be repeated.
4. The last time the Cardinals were in Seattle I was 20 years old and home from college for the summer in Portland and my brother and I drove up for a game. It seems like a million years ago. I am lucky to have seen so many games in my life that I honestly don't remember if we were at the one game that series that the Cardinals won or one of the other two that they lost. I'd like to think that the Cardinals win every game I go to. Either way, Seattle is a beautiful city, and the Cardinals should go there more often than once a decade.
5. The Cardinals will try to avoid the sweep tomorrow when Jaime Garcia faces off against James Paxton at 3:10 p.m. CT.