(Busch Stadium) Initially the plan couldn’t have looked any better for the St. Louis Cardinals. Down by a run in the 8th inning, Adolis Garcia was brought in to pinch-run for Matt Carpenter who had walked. Jose Martinez hit a slow roller down the third base line that resulted in Mike Moustakas making an errant throw to first. Garcia streaked around third but that’s when the plan came undone.
Garcia wiped out and face planted in the middle of no man’s land.
Instead of scoring the tying run, Garcia recorded the final out and the Cardinals went on to lose to Milwaukee 2-1.
“The kid’s giving you everything he’s got, it’s just unfortunate he fell,” said Mike Shildt. “It’s one of those things that happened. Clearly, it would’ve tied the game but it wasn’t for lack of effort. Things happen and he was giving everything he had.
Garcia dressed at his locker and left without comment. A team representative later shared the rookie was too upset to speak. His teammates understood.
“Stuff happens,” said Jose Martinez while shrugging his shoulders. “I got nothing to say about that…we did everything that play. I hustled. He did too. He’s too quick, man. He’s too fast, he slipped and it happens.”
The win clinched Milwaukee’s first playoff berth since 2011 and the Brewers began their celebration on the pitcher’s mound.
“Kind of tough to watch,” said Paul DeJong. “I sat out there and watched them just because they deserved it. They earned it. It’s something that I want. It’s something that I’ve done in the minor leagues. I really wanted to be out there doing it with us but we’re going to have to keep pushing and try to pull something out. I definitely want that feeling.”
The Brewers’ celebration also led to the Cardinals missing a familiar last home game of the regular season tradition of gathering on the field and tipping their cap in appreciation to the crowd.
“It’s my oversight,” said Shildt. “Quite honestly, just my head was somewhere else. No disrespect to our wonderful fan base. Those guys handled it, they went out there and they celebrated but they were class and they deserved to. That’s a nice accomplishment. I’ve got no issue with it–we didn’t do better to prevent it.”
The Cardinals will keep their rotation set of Adam Wainwright, Miles Mikolas, and then Jack Flaherty for this weekend’s three game series in Chicago to close out the regular season.
photo credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports