GAME 107: Complete Domination
Adam Wainwright twirled his second complete-game of the season, a five hitter, and also drove in the game winner as the Cardinals (58-49) defeated the reeling Milwaukee 6-1 on a night that celebrated the Cards’ 1982 World Series win over the Brewers. THROWBACK: Both Milwaukee and the Cardinals celebrated their intense World Series appearance in 1982 by wearing their eighties-styled uniforms (the Birds thankfully did not wear the awful powder-blue version). The Cardinals also made it an occasion by wheeling out most of the surviving members of that team, including a VERY rare appearance from Keith Hernandez, who received a warm ovation. Even David Green showed up! I was a bit bummed that Willie McGee, Tommy Herr, and George Hendrick didn’t make it. Also, in a classy move, the Cardinals brought out the families of deceased Cardinals Dave Ricketts, Darrell Porter, and Bob Forsch. I love this organization at times like this!!
QUICK RECOVERY: After allowing a first-inning run, Wainwright locked the Brewers into a stranglehold and refused to yield. He really became vicious following a third-inning balk, allowing just two hits the rest of the way. Wainwright also added two hits of his own, including a double into the left-center gap to drive in the game winner. Like Yadier Molina the previous night, Waino did it all. Anybody else think Wainwright has returned to form?
ODD CALL: With Milwaukee leading 1-0 in the second, Carlos Beltran ripped a line drive toward the right field fence that appeared to hit near the top of the wall and ricochet back onto the field. However, the umpires reviewed it and ruled it a home run. It’s curious, because the fence at Busch Stadium does not have any sort of yellow top line; a home run should be any ball that clears the fence. In this case, however, the Cardinals received the call.
SHOW ME D-MONEY: Daniel Descalso has been playing with renewed purpose lately. He had an incredible night yesterday, and delivered again with another hit. He also made another defensive gem at second. Even when he’s not hitting, his glove compels me to want him in the lineup. When he is hitting, I demand it.
OH CAPTAIN, MY CAPTAIN: After his astounding game yesterday, you’d forgive Yadier Molina for relaxing a bit today. Nope. Instead, Yadi stole second in the second inning (he had the base so stolen that he basically jogged into second), padding his career-high total. Then, an inning later, Molina delivered a clutch two-run single to really pad the lead. Who is this adorable new speed-demon behind the plate for us these days??
FINALLY: Nobody will ever mistake Jon Jay for Mark McGwire. Jay isn’t a power hitter, although he showed some long ball pop last year (ten homers). Still, Jay hadn’t hit a home run this year since April 14th. He ended that drought in the sixth with a nice drive that just cleared the fence in right-center. For Jay, this must be a welcoming sign that his shoulder problems are finally dissipating and allowing him to better extend his arms. We need this cat to get hot soon.
PLAYER OF THE GAME: Waino, of course.
CONCLUSION: It’s so hard to give yourself over to this team given how many times they’ve appeared to be ready for that big, convincing winning streak, only to let us down. I must admit that they looked especially sharp tonight on all fronts. Were they inspired by the presence of greats like Whitey Herzog and John Stuper in the clubhouse? Who knows. However, I’m believing in this team’s potential once more after two brilliant games. LET’S GET ON A ROLL, GUYS!