RIP, SWEET LOU
The first three innings tonight was all sorts of jacked up because of how wild the wind was blowing out towards CF. Seriously, you could tell it was going to be an adventure the first batter of the game.
Wong would pop a ball up in what looked like foul territory down the 1B line. Rizzo would overrun it as the wind just carried the ball back to fair territory, but he was still able to pick it up and beat Wong to the bag. You had to see it to understand just how insane it really was.
The next batter, Tommy Edman, used the wind to his advantage. Edman would get a fastball right down the chute and he’d take it to LCF to put the Cards on the board early, 1-0. His 2nd HR of the season.
Rizzo would get the run back for Lester in the bottom half of the 1st, taking Hud deep to CF to tie it 1-1. Lester would go out for the 2nd and work a quick 1-2-3 inning on 12 pitches.
Jason Kipnis would give the Cubs a two run lead with a two out, 2-run HR to deep RF making it 3-1. Contreras would score on the play, as he worked a leadoff walk vs Hudson.
But Lester would need more than a two run lead, as the Cardinals would bat around in the top of the 3rd, plating 4 runs to regain the lead 5-3.
Haaaaaaaarrrry started things off getting hit by a cutter on the outside of the left knee and quickly scoot over to 3B on a KoWo double slapped down the LF line, putting runners in scoring position for Edman. Edman would groundout softly to Báez, who would fire a strike to Contreras at home to nail Bader.
Not that it would really matter because Goldy would absolutely nuke a 3-run tater a batter later, sending it all the way to Waveland Ave. Goldy literally broke statcast and savant with his HR, as it never registered a distance or exit velocity.
Ravelo would drive in his 1st RBI of the season next, sending a double to RCF to score O’Neill.
The Cubs bats would go silent the rest of the way vs Hudson and company (Reyes, Cabrera, Gio).
Reyes would work 1.2IP, tossing 25 pitches, while striking out 3. I don’t think there’s anyone I’m more happy for than Alex. Seeing him consistently hit the upper 90s with the heater and also having sharp control over his curveball is a thing of beauty.
But let’s not snooze on Cabrera’s outing, as he would come in after Reyes and work 1.1IP, striking out 4 batters on 19 pitches. He would come in to get Happ for the final out of the 7th to begin his evening, striking Happ out on three pitches (change, 97mph heater, 98mph heater).
After giving up a leadoff double to Bryant in the bottom of the 8th, he’d battle back to strikeout the next three (Rizzo, Báez, Babe Ruth) all on buck nasty curveballs. I mean these were the best ones he’s thrown all season, just unfair stuff.
Wong and DeJong would both add rbi singles to add two more runs for the Cards, making it 7-3. Haaaaaarrrrrry would have himself a night, too. Bader would reach base in all four of his plate appearances (HBP, double, double, single).
Gio would come in for the bottom of the 9th in a none save situation, working an easy 1-2-3 inning on 14 pitches to get Contreras, Maybin, and Caratini (pinch-hitting for Bote). Caratini would strikeout looking at a front door 93mph fastball to end it, 7-3.
With the win, the Cardinals (17-15) move to just 1.5GB of the Cubs (23-18) for 1st place in the NL Central. Johan Oviedo (0-1, 4.30) gets the ball tomorrow afternoon, looking for the Cards fourth straight win. He will he matched up against Kyle Hendricks (4-4, 3.78), who always seems to have the Cards number.
First pitch scheduled for 3:10pm c/t.
Also, before I sign off for the night, I just wanted to say the entire Cardinals community lost an icon today in Lou Brock. The Cardinal HOF will never be the same, gonna miss ya Lou. May you rest in power!!!