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Game 18 Recap: Cards Top Brewers 4-1

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Lance Lynn Strikes Many Fellows Out, team inches toward .500

St Louis Cardinals v Milwaukee Brewers
a sweaty man throws a fastball
Photo by Dylan Buell/Getty Images

Hello sports fans. The Cardinals are bad now. I dunno! They should stop being bad soon if they want to win more. Tonight they were pretty good though, and they won.

The Lineup

Lance Lynn took the mound for the good guys; nights off for Dexter Fowler (nursing a sore heel) and Aledmys Diaz (routine).

Milwaukee started some guys. Eric Thames was one; he’s cool. Chase Anderson was their pitcher.

The Game

The Cardinals wasted leadoff doubles in consecutive innings to start the game. But Ryan Braun misplayed the ball on both doubles (losing the first in the sun, and just bobbling the second), which — given that he is one of the easier guys in the league to dislike — was fun for its own sake. Silver linings, yeah?

Meanwhile, the Brewers parlayed an infield hit, a walk, and a double into a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the 1st.

In the third inning, the Cardinals got yet another (!) leadoff double. Once again they didn’t score. Could I have listed this along with the first two in the previous paragraph? Yes, of course. But (1) I am curious how many people will now quickly leap to correct that paragraph in the comments before reading this one, and (2) come ooooooon, again? Surely not, but yes. Again.

The Cardinals finally broke through and plated a run in the 4th, when Randal Grichuk doubled and then Braun messed up again. He dove and made a pretty good play on a shallow Kolten Wong fly ball, then tried to catch Grichuk straying off second but instead threw the ball into the home dugout. 1-1.

Lynn and Anderson traded zeroes until the top of the 7th. At that point Aledmys Diaz — pinch-hitting for Lynn — did this to a Carlos Torres (in relief of Anderson) pitch:

BLAMMO. 2-1 Cards.

Matt Bowman’s now a fixture in the late-inning mix, I guess, and... okay. Seth Maness was kinda the same guy and did it acceptably one year, so okay. Let’s get some Bowman memes running and enjoy it before we inevitably come to hate him in a couple-three years. Anyway! He threw a 1-2-3 7th inning.

The Cards missed out on a big insurance run in the 8th when Yadi was called out on a tag play sliding into home. It reeeeeally looked like the tag was high and he got his foot in on replay, but the review crew in New York City apparently didn’t think they had a conclusive camera angle to prove it. If they don’t have clear-cut evidence the call on the field was wrong, the call stands, and that’s how this one went.

That absent insurance run immediately became a big deal in the bottom of the inning. The Brewers got it to first and third with two outs vs. Brett Cecil, and with Braun up and lefty Travis Shaw on deck, Cecil gave Braun the old unintentional-intentional walk. Everything worked out when Cecil got Shaw to quickly pop up to third, but fans of justice and goodness everywhere were momentarily concerned.

But lo! Jedd “Jedd!” Gyorko hit a two-run, two-out inside-the-park home run* that was just as improbable and funny to watch as it sounds. So they got some insurance after all, and Seung Hwan Oh was staked to a 4-1 lead heading into the 9th.

*shut up and let me enjoy this; when I did that when I was 10 it was a homer, and it’s a homer now

Oh threw a clean 9th, and the Cardinals improved to 8-10. Beats the hell out of 3-9, anyway.

GREG GARCIA OBP MONSTER Update

Greg Garcia (an OBP monster) reached base twice.

Other Stuff

  • Lynn’s final line: 6 IP, 7 K, 2 BB, 3 H, 1 R. The Brewers are ehhh but that’s still good.
  • I could do without ever hearing Mark Sweeney on a broadcast again. Surely networks can stop hiring guys who not only are dinosaurs, but are proud of it.
  • The generic run expectancy for an inning with a runner on second base and no outs is a little north of one (1) run. The more you know.
  • Cool play in the bottom of the 5th: after Yadier Molina put Keon Broxton on third with a short-hopped throw on a steal attempt, there was one out with the pitcher up. Lynn struck Anderson out, and they caught Broxton in a genuinely fun rundown to end the inning.
  • The unfortunate tag review play didn’t end the St. Louis threat in the 8th, of course. Matt Adams did that with a lean and flexible tapper back to the pitcher. Still, though, maybe if we just find him 400 plate appearances... who knows! I know just the way to do it.
  • Eric Thames is huge and terrifying and the Cardinals walked him three times and I know it’s bad, but that’s ok.
  • This is a four-game set, so the same teams will square off tomorrow at 2 Central I think. It’ll be on TV.