(Busch Stadium) It was more than a home run, it was a moment–a rising, line drive off the bat of Aldemys Diaz that ricocheted off the “fair” pole for a 3-run homer. His 426ft shot tied the game 4-4 as his St. Louis Cardinals went on to beat San Francisco 7-4 on Saturday night.
“I just knew it was pretty close and kept running,” smiled Diaz. “I think it was a changing moment of the game and hopefully we keep it for the rest of the season. You could see it in the dugout, you could see it in the fans–it was pretty amazing today.”
Ironically, the St. Louis Cardinals began a subtle push for Diaz to receive some All-Star consideration in their game notes, pointing out among other stats that he ranked 6th among National League hitters with a .321 batting average entering the night and was tied for 14th in slugging (.527). Those numbers obviously have gone up with Saturday’s performance.
Also noted, while the errors from Aledmys have occurred, so too have the defensive gems–12 of them in fact, which leads the Cardinals.
Earlier this week, MLB provided their first update on NL All-Star balloting with shortstop as follows:
1. Addison Russell, Cubs: 544,240
2. Trevor Story, Rockies: 534,290
3. Asdrubal Cabrera, Mets: 247,954
4. Brandon Crawford, Giants: 246,390
5. Zack Cozart, Reds: 231,502
And to look at all of the numbers on paper, Diaz does have a case to at least be in the conversation as amongst NL shortstops he was Top 3 in at least six offensive categories (AVG, HR, H, OBP, R, 2B).
The game on Saturday was broadcast to a national audience on FOX, so that doesn’t hurt either.
–Three other home runs were hit by the Cardinals: Brandon Moss, Stephen Piscotty, and by Matt Adams.
For Moss, it was his third homer in the last six games.
Piscotty and Adams went back-to-back, the fourth time this season the team has done so. It was the fifth time the Cardinals had hit four or more homers in a game in 2016.
photo credit: Bill Greenblatt/UPI, Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports