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Cards’ Staff Walks Eleven, Including Three With the Bases Loaded, and Club Loses 4-1 to the Mets

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MLB: New York Mets at St. Louis Cardinals Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

After a 15-minute rain delay, John Gant took the mound for the Cards. Jeff McNeil drove an 0-2 hanging curve deep to right-center, but Bader raced over, extended his glove and made the catch at the track to save an extra-base hit.

After Francisco Lindor drew a 3-2 walk, Michael Conforto grounded a 2-1 inside slider to 2nd. It should have been an inning-ending 4-6-3 double play, but DeJong’s throw to first sailed wide to DeJong’s left and pulled him off the bag. The Cards could only get the force at 2nd, but Pete Alonso grounded a down-the-middle 0-1 sinker to short for a 6-4 force to end the inning. Righty Taijuan Walker took the hill for the Mets and struck out the side in the bottom of the 1st. Tommy Edman struck out looking at a 2-2 low-and-away splitter on the 8th pitch of the plate appearance. Dylan Carlson struck out swinging at an elevated 0-2 fastball. Paul Goldschmidt struck out looking at an outside 3-2 fastball on the corner to end the inning.

Dominic Smith struck out chasing a low 3-2 slider to start the top of the 2nd. Kevin Pillar grounded an outside 1-0 sinker through the right side for a base hit. The Cards were in a shift and there was a ton of room. Pillar took off for 2nd on the 1-0 pitch to Jonathan Villar. Knizner’s throw beat Pillar to the bag, but his throw was high, which allowed Pillar to sneak his hand under the tag for a stolen base. After Villar walked on 5 pitches, James McCann grounded a 1-1 low-and-in sinker deep in the hole. DeJong drifted over to pick it up and threw across his body to 2nd to just nip Villar at 2nd for a 6-4 force. With runners at the corners now and 2 out, the pitcher Walker struck out chasing an 0-2 slider low-and-away and in the dirt to end the inning. Nolan Arenado grounded a low 2-2 splitter through the wide-open right side of a shifted defense for a base hit to lead off the bottom of the 2nd. Paul DeJong chopped a 1-0 low splitter to 3rd. Villar charged and fired to 2nd, but his sidearm throw sailed into right field for an error. Arenado went to 3rd, and now it’s runners at the corners with nobody out. Justin Williams hit a 1-0 splitter for a sinking liner towards 3rd. Villar knocked it down and threw Williams out at first, with his throw almost pulling Alonso off the bag. Goldschmidt went to 2nd on the play. Harrison Bader flied an 0-1 low-and-in slider deep enough to left-center to score Arenado on the Sac Fly to put the Cards on the board 1-0 and move Goldschmidt to 3rd.

Andrew Knizner struck out chasing an outside 1-2 fastball to end the inning.

McNeil squibbed a high 1-2 fastball to the left side opposite the shift to start the top of the 3rd. Arenado ran over and tried to make a play, but the throw was too late, and McNeil had an infield hit. Lindor flied a 1-2 hanging slider for Bader on the track in left-center. Gant was ahead of Conforto in the count 0-2, but lost him to a 3-2 walk. Alonso lined a first-pitch low-and-away slider to right-center for a base hit. They decided not to test Bader’s arm, and the bases were loaded. Gant would work his way out of this jam. Smith struck out looking at a low-and-in 0-2 sinker that looked like it was a bit inside. Pillar drove a 2-2 low-and-in curve deep to left. It was hooking foul to the left of the pole, but Williams jumped and pulled the ball back from over the wall to make an inning-ending catch.

Walker retired the Cards in order on 10 pitches in the bottom of the 3rd. Gant popped an 0-1 hanging slider to first. Edman flied a hanging 1-0 splitter to left. Carlson lined an outside 3-2 fastball to center to end the inning.

Villar struck out looking at a 1-2 inside fastball that was a couple of inches inside to start the top of the 4th. McCann ripped a hanging 1-0 outside curve for a grounded base hit through the hole to left. Walker lined a first-pitch inside sinker to right-center for a base hit to move McCann to 2nd. McNeil slowly grounded a first-pitch low-and-away change to 2nd for the 4-6 force, and that was all the Cards could get because the ball wasn’t hit hard enough for the double play. McCann moved to 3rd, but Lindor struck out swinging at a 3-2 low slider to strand the runners. To start the bottom of the 4th, Goldschmidt struck out swinging at an 0-2 slider on the corner, low-and-away. Arenado check-swung at a hanging 1-0 slider and tapped it in front of the plate for the pitcher. DeJong grounded a 2-2 outside slider to short to end the inning.

Conforto flied an inside 0-2 sinker to shallow right to lead off the 5th. Alonso grounded a 1-2 inside sinker to Arenado towards the line at 3rd. Arenado’s throw to 1st sailed a bit to Goldschmidt’s left and was too high, forcing Goldy to jump to get it. Conforto was safe on the throwing error. Smith then drew a 3-2 walk. Gant walked Pillar on 4 pitches to load the bases. Kodi Whitley was warming up in the bullpen and Gant is now at 91 pitches, but he was left out there. Villar worked the count to 3-2 and delivered a low sinker that was very close at the low edge of the zone, but was called a ball.

That walk scored Alonso to tie the game 1-1, and only then did Shildt take Gant out of the game and bring in Kodi Whitley. McCann also walked on 5 pitches. That’s 4 straight walks, and Smith scored to give the Mets a 2-1 lead.

The pitcher Walker struck out swinging at an outside 2-2 fastball. McNeil slowly grounded an inside 1-2 fastball towards the middle. DeJong fielded it on the right side of the bag and fired to first to beat McNeil by a step to end the inning. Williams sharply grounded a low 2-0 fastball towards the middle to start the bottom of the 5th, but Lindor was positioned right there to the right of the bag and threw him out. Bader struck out looking at an outside 3-2 fastball that looked a bit outside. Knizner popped a hanging 1-1 curve to 1st to end the inning.

Genesis Cabrera came out to pitch the top of the 6th for the Cards. After Lindor drew a 3-2 walk, Conforto popped a low-and-in 0-1 curve to 2nd. Alonso struck out looking at a looping low-and-in 1-2 curve. Cabrera’s 1-2 pitch was a low-and-away 97 mph fastball that got away from Knizner to the backstop for a wild pitch that allowed Lindor to move to 2nd. But Smith grounded a low-and-in 2-2 curve to Edman on the outfield grass to end the inning. After that out, it started to rain hard at the stadium, and the tarp came out for a rain delay. Play resumed after about a 15-minute delay. Matt Carpenter pinch hit for Cabrera and struck out swinging at an inside 3-2 fastball to lead off the bottom of the 6th. Edman grounded a 1-0 high fastball into the shift on the right side for Lindor. Carlson flied a high 0-2 fastball to left to end the inning, and that’s 15 in a row retired by Walker.

Seth Elledge came out for the top of the 7th. Pillar struck out chasing an elevated 1-2 sinker. Villar popped a 2-1 inside fastball to DeJong at short. McCann sharply grounded a low-and-away 3-2 sinker down the 1st base line for a base hit. Walker hit for himself and struck out chasing a 1-2 slider in the dirt. Walker came back out for the Mets in the bottom of the 7th at 80 pitches. Goldschmidt struck out swinging at an elevated 1-2 fastball. Arenado popped a high 2-2 fastball to short. DeJong popped an inside 1-0 fastball to Alonso at 1st in foul territory to end the inning.

Tyler Webb came out to pitch for the Cards in the top of the 8th and started it off by walking McNeil on 5 pitches. Lindor also walked on 5 pitches, and Webb can’t get his fastball over. Conforto broke his bat on a first-pitch inside fastball and blooped it into shallow right for a base hit to load the bases. Shildt made a double switch. Woodford came in to pitch for the first time since his April 30th recall in the #5 spot. Edmundo Sosa came out to play SS in the #9 spot, with DeJong leaving the game. Woodford walked Alonso on 5 pitches, and that’s the 11th walk issued by Cardinal pitchers in this game. McNeil scored to extend the Mets’ lead to 3-1. Smith sharply grounded a 2-0 down-the-middle fastball through the right side for a base hit to score Lindor and give the Mets a 4-1 lead.

This is the first run of the game for the Mets that was not scored due to a bases-loaded walk. Pillar popped an inside 1-1 slider to Sosa on the outfield grass for the first out of the inning. Villar struck out swinging at a 3-2 outside slider. McCann drove a first-pitch low slider deep to center, but Bader settled under it at the track to end the inning. Walker’s day was done after 92 pitches and the Mets made a double switch. Righty Trevor May came out to pitch in the #5 spot. Albert Almora Jr. came out to play CF in the #5 spot, with Pillar moving from CF to LF and Smith leaving the game. Williams struck out swinging way early at a 1-2 low-and-away change. Bader flied an 0-1 high-and-outside change to left. Knizner struck out swinging at an up-and-in 2-2 fastball to end the inning.

Almora lined a 1-1 outside fastball to right to lead off the top of the 9th. McNeil struck out swinging at an outside 0-2 slider. Lindor sharply grounded an inside fastball through the right side for a base hit, but the Mets stranded their 17th runner when Conforto grounded a first-pitch low-and-in fastball for Goldschmidt’s unassisted play to end the inning. Righty Edwin Diaz came out for the bottom of the 9th to try and close the Cards out. Sosa grounded a low-and-away 1-2 92 mph slider to 3rd. Edman blooped an inside 0-2 100 mph fastball to right for a base hit, only the Cards’ 2nd of the game. Carlson ripped a 2-2 outside slider to center for a base hit to move Edman to 2nd. The Cards unbelievably have the tying run at the plate, but it was not meant to be. Goldschmidt popped a first-pitch inside fastball foul to Alonso, but he dropped it. Goldy ended up flying an outside 0-2 fastball to Almora in left-center. Arenado grounded a high 1-2 101 mph fastball to short for a 6-4 force to end the game.

Gant (5 days rest) 4.1 IP, 5 H, 2 R, 1 ER, 6 BB, 5 SO; Whitley (no rest, top 5, 1 out, bases loaded, tied 1-1) .2 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 SO, allowed 1 out of 3 inherited runners to score; Cabrera (2 days rest, top 6, down 2-1) 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 1 SO, WP; Elledge (no rest, top 7, down 2-1) 1 IP, 1 H, 0 R, 0 BB, 2 SO; Webb (no rest, top 8, down 2-1) 0 IP (pitched to 3 batters in the 8th), 1 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 2 BB, 0 SO; Woodford (top 8, nobody out, bases loaded, down 2-1) 2 IP, 2 H, 0 R, 1 BB, 2 SO, allowed 2 out of 3 inherited runners to score.

ODDS AND ENDS

Matthew Liberatore is starting tonight for AAA Memphis for his first action above A ball...The only other NL Central club playing today was the Brewers, who lost 2-0 to the Phillies. Brandon Woodruff threw 6.2 innings of 2-hit, 11-strikeout ball with only 2 walks, but was outdueled by Zack Wheeler, who threw a complete-game 3-hit shutout with no walks...The Cubs start a 3-game series against the Pirates tomorrow...Reds first baseman Joey Votto broke his thumb yesterday when he was hit by a Dallas Keuchel pitch. He’ll be out for at least 3 weeks, and tomorrow the clubs starts a 17-day stretch without a day off, the first 10 of which are on the road...The Brewers travel to Florida tomorrow for a 3-game series against the Marlins.