I don’t know where to start this recap, but it makes sense to talk about how Adam Wainwright has saved this pitching staff since the Cardinals have come back from their late July covid outbreak.
After pitching 5 innings in a doubleheader vs the White Sox on Wednesday, Waino toed the rubber again. Except this time lasted a couple innings longer, settling in after an unfortunate first three innings. Side note, this would be the 267th start for Waino and Yadi together as battery mates.
The Reds would jump off to an early 3-0 lead, making Waino earn every out he’d record. The 1st inning wouldn’t go his way, as the Reds would capitalize on two errors from the Cards infield. Goldy would commit a throwing error to leadoff the evening making a fantastic diving stop to his right, but throwing an errant throw to Waino covering the bag. After a Castellanos fly out to Fowler in RF, Jesse Winker kept his bat scorching hot with a single to RF to put runners on the corners.
Suárez would come up, grounding into a sure double-play to Brad Miller at 3B, who would bobble the ball and overthrow Goldy at 1B, allowing Votto to cross the plate to make it a 1-0 Reds lead. Moustakas would dig in next, getting robbed on a sac-fly to Prince Sex in LF, diving superman-like to his left to take away an rbi base hit from Mouse, although Winker would tag up to make it 2-0 Cincy.
Waino would run into a bit of trouble in the top of the 2nd, serving up a one out solo HR to Freddy Galvis to extend the Reds lead to 3-0. Barnhart and Votto followed with back-to-back singles to put runners on the corners for Castellanos and Winker. Castellanos would fly out to Dex again and Winker would groundout to Goldy at 1B.
The 3rd inning would be the final of any struggles for Waino. Suárez (infield single) and Moustakas (rbi double) would start the inning off with back-to-back base knocks. This is where Waino settled into that groove. The groove of retiring the last 15 batters he’d face on the evening, recording 4 strikeouts on no walks.
Waino officially was in beast mode, mixing his entire repertoire the best we have seen him in a long time, allowing him to stay in the game for 7 complete innings.
Bats vs Sonny Gray and Co.
Sonny Gray, leading the NL in strikeouts coming into tonight’s start, would get hit around in his 2nd inning of work after a quick 1-2-3 1st inning, recording 2 k’s.
But the Cards would answer back in the bottom of the 2nd, as 4 of the first 5 batters would reach base against Gray. Carp would draw a free pass, Miller continued his hot streak with a single into LCF (beating the shift again), O’Neill fly out to LF warning track, Dex walk, and of course a Yadi two-run single slapped into RF.
What a welcome back for our king, Yadier Molina. Everything seemed right again in the world after Yadi delivered there.
Sonny Gray would enter a nice little groove himself, matching Waino. Gray would last 4 more innings after the loud 2nd inning from the Cardinals making it a one run game at 3-2.
The Cards would try and get something going against Gray in his final inning in the 6th with a one out single from O’Neill to bring up Dex. Dex would ground into a 5-6-3 double play on a 3-0 count, ending any threat of a chance to add on some runs to force a comeback.
Lucas Sims would relieve Gray in the bottom of the 7th, striking out the side (Yadi, Carlson, Wong) on just 12 pitches. Sims would flash an insane curve, thing was dancing all over the zone.
Cards pen and late inning comeback
Alex Reyes and Seth Elledge would throw the final couple innings out of the Cardinals bullpen.
Alex Reyes would be a little over the place, but wouldn’t get tagged with any runs. Reyes would get two quick fly outs (Winker, Moustakas) to Carlson in CF, sandwiching a walk to Suárez in between. Akiyama came up next with a first pitch single into RF to put runners on the corners for Josh VanMeter. Reyes would then buckle down and pick up a huge strikeout to send things to the bottom half of the 8th, getting VanMeter on some 97mph cheese. Gosh, it’s such a relief to have a healthy Alex Reyes on this team.
Sims would take the ball again to start the bottom of the 8th for the Reds pen, getting back-to-back groundouts to Galvis off the bats of Edman (Galvis shifted) and Goldschmidt. Amir Garrett, the big OG, would come in to relieve Sims for the final out in the 8th, getting Carpenter to strikeout on five pitches, whiffing at a slider off the plate.
Seth Elledge would get the call for the top of the 9th, running into big trouble allowing three walks. Somehow, miraculously, Elledge would escape the jam without allowing a single Reds run to cross the plate.
Galvis started the inning with a walk, but quickly got erased by Yadi on a caught stealing on a failed hit and run attempt with Barnhart at the plate. Barnhart would fly out to O’Neill a pitch later for a quick two outs.
Votto kept the inning alive with a double down the RF line, sneaking past the glove of Goldy to bring in the dangerous Castellanos. Castellanos would draw a walk, as would the next batter, Winker, loading the bases for the big bat of Suárez.
Elledge would get the struggling Suárez with a slider off the plate and riding into the dirt to take things to the bottom of the 9th.
Raisel Iglesias would come in for the bottom of the 9th, looking for his 3rd save of the season. Except he’d allow the first four Cardinals to reach base. Miller would get hit by a slider the first pitch, Prince Sex would walk, Dex would single into RF (beating the shift), and Yadi would collect his 3rd rbi of the game with an infield single off the glove of Iglesias, plating Miller to make it a one run game, 4-3. How fitting of Yadi to have the first 3 rbi of the game after coming back from the IL.
With Carlson batting, Iglesias would get pegged with a huge balk call to tie the game 4-4. After the balk, Iglesias bounced back to strikeout Carlson on an 87mph changeup on the outer portion of the plate.
David Bell would go back to his pen, turning to Nate Jones with one out for Kolten Wong. Castellanos would come in from RF to play in the infield for the Wong at bat, but it wouldn’t matter. Wong would deliver on the fourth pitch of the at bat, drilling a long walkoff single over the CF Jankowski’s head to score Dex for the 5-4 Cardinals comeback victory.
And what a celebration it was at first base for KoWo and the entire team. Talk about good and necessary vibes.
Dakota Hudson (0-2, 5.40) gets the ball in game two tomorrow night, matching up against the sinker baller righty, Anthony DeSclafani (1-1, 6.23). First pitch set for 7:15pm c/t.