Due to some technical difficulties with authentication because browsers are weird, I am back to my old CFIC account. Besides, I moved back to the city years ago, so I'm in Chitown again, and I am most definitely a Cards Fan. Wooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo
The Cardinals won the first game of this series in rather decisive fashion, but the birds of another came flying back with a win of their own last night. Obviously, both teams want to win. So today, the two teams got to find out who was the lesser than in 2017, as they aren’t playing each other again this year.
While the Cardinals arguably really should win this series, they two teams’ offenses are rather equal... and not all that great so far. The Cardinals definitely have the edge on pitching and defense, though. And probably more is expected of the Redbird team, despite a lackluster-at-best start to the season (or borderline garbage fire as some have put it) and the Orioles good results in the spring.
Today St. Louis had Lance Lynn throwing off the mound, part of the Cardinals trio of effectual starters that are holding this season together with twine. However, as has been the case all season, Lynn has been defying reality with his ERA results. What that means his, he has been due for some regression, statistically. Still, the results have been quite nice: a rotation-best 2.69 ERA, which is 8th in MLB. For example. that is just ahead of Chris Sale and Carlos Martinez!
The tale of 2017 Lance Lynn is that he made the comeback from TJ surgery, and that has resulted in an insanely good run preventing BABIP... and a quite high home run rate. Lance needs to lower that home run rate.... like, pretty bad. Because there will be some regression coming via BABIP luck most probably.
Meanwhile for the Orioles, Ubaldo Jiminez is still a pitcher. He has been rather terrible in 2017. In 56 innings, he is worth a slightly negative fraction of fWAR.
However, he started off pretty good today, despite Stephen Piscotty running roughshod all over his pitches. Piscotty muscled two home runs over the outfield walls before it was even the 4th inning. Unfortunately for us, they were both solo shots. And the Orioles had two of those of their own and also a couple of singles which resulted in an RBI.
So Lance Lynn showed off his home run rate today, and also was suffering from some unlucky sequencing a bit. In the 4th inning, he gave up his second walk with the score 3-2 Baltimore. And Lance hit a batter with 2 outs, ouch! With men and first and second, what would Mr. Lynn do?
He struck a mofo out is what he did. He tricked Seth Smith with a rising fastball... one of the guys who stung him earlier with a solo home run in the first.
But in the fifth inning, the downside surfaced again and Lance Lynn gave up another home run. And a couple of triples. He was getting jacked. The Cardinals had some work to do, as they were down 5-2. But Lance Lynn only had one out with a man on third... wasn’t looking good.
And since Lance was getting thwacked around, he nearly gave up another dinger, but it was a sacrifice fly instead thanks to Dexter Fowler. 6-2 Orioles. But then, it got sadder, with yet ANOTHER home run off of Lance Lynn. I guess he was chucking home run derby baseballs up there. And that was that for Lance Lynn’s June 18th, 2017 outing.
With the Orioles ahead by 5 runs (7-2), the Cardinals really had to get the bats out. Luckily, the Orioles pitching is also home run derby-esque, so if they Cardinals got to hacking (no pun intended), they might be able to catch up.
Now for a brief intermission, for comment of the day:
3B, HR, 3B, robbed HR, HR
Actual sequence of a guy coming off TJ, over the 95-pitch mark (around 110 by the end) on a sweltering day, with bullpen dudes rested and warmed up before Mike even makes a mound visit.
Yes I properly made an ass of myself in Section 18, on VEB’s behalf.
/dude in OT18 jersey in Row 5 agrees FWIW
And also, I stopped paying attention to the game. This season, I don’t have much confidence in the team, or much of anything really, in general, but this has been some stale baseball served up on a questionable plate. Oh wait, in the 7th, Stephen Piscotty almost hit his third home run! Except he didn’t, and it wasn’t THAT close... but close enough to mention I suppose.
Aledmys Diaz was 1 for 2 at this point, with a liner single to right field. He actually took a walk, which was a rare thing to see this season since he has a 4.6% walk rate. He could go on a tear in the second half I suppose, looking at his BABIP. But this is what one would definitively call a sophomore slump.
Next the king of walks Greg Garcia was up, because that’s what he does best. But instead he decided to try to hit a home run. Try being the key word. A walk is > an out.
So the point was that no runs scored and it was 8-2 Orioles. Trevor Rosenthal came in to pitch though, which is a fun thing in 2017. 101 mph high heat! Wow, good luck!
And Matt Carpenter took a walk from the leadoff spot! Would Fowler hit a home run or something? Another walk perhaps? He seemed to be trying to press it down the 3rd base line... and then, why yes, he would hit a home run or something! #13.
The Orioles must’ve been getting nervous because they brought in Castro to pitch from the bullpen. Because the Cardinals are scoring all their home runs today via dinger, Yadier Molina hit one into left field that was pretty much destroyed for another solo shot to go with Piscotty’s two and the Fowler 2 run blast.
But the Cardinals were still down by 3 runs with little time left to produce it and twice as much time to possibly squander the barely within grasp chance. But Brett Cecil was the bullpen pitcher of the 8th. Always a nailbiter. Thanks Cecil! Well, actually, he did ok today. That’s a relief!
Aledmys Diaz started out the quest in the 9th inning. But he just flied out. Still down by 3. And Greg Garcia tapped out to an infielder. It was all up to DeJong. It has been a truly weird year. And Brach made sure that the Orioles won, 8-5, by three runs, and henceforth, won the rubber match.
Since I have to go to work like, right now, that’s all folks. It was great to be a substitute on Father’s Day, I hope all the dads got to spend time with their childrens and whatnot. There is a dreaded off day tomorrow, so be prepared.