(Busch Stadium) The St. Louis Cardinals fell back to the .500 mark (24-24) with a 5-1 loss to the Los Angeles Dodgers this afternoon.
Besides three home runs allowed, it was a game that once again featured the Cardinals aggressiveness work against them. Calling the game on KMOX radio, broadcaster and team Hall of Famer Mike Shannon shared his frustrations in the 7th inning.
“You’ve gotta hit the cut off man,” pointed out Shannon after Jose Martinez tried to throw out Chris Taylor running to third. The throw allowed Chase Utley to move up to second base.
“The Dodgers are a good ball club and they’ll capitalize on the mistakes you make and they did,” continued Shannon. “The guy takes second base, who hit the ball. Utley, he’s a very good base runner. So now the double play’s not in order. You have Puig up there–you’re going to walk him now? Set the double play in order? They already have a pinch-hitter up there. I mean, it changes the whole friggin’–it was a terrible throw. You can’t make those kinds of mistakes and we see this all the time with this Cardinal team. You can’t–if you’re gonna–you can do it, if you want to be a second-division club…and if you continue to play like that, you’ll be a second-division club.”
Yasiel Puig hit a sacrifice fly to drive in a run before Leake recorded a strikeout to end the inning.
After the game, Jose Martinez was aware of his mistake.
“Kind of rushing things a little bit,” he said, adding he tried to do too much on the play. “When you overdo some stuff, sometimes you’re not going to get the results you wanted. But I think you learn from your mistakes. If I get in the same situation, I’m going to do better.”
Martinez shared he wanted the throw back almost as soon as he released it.
“I think he kind of stopped, that’s why I went aggressive,” he explained. “I thought I had a chance to get him at third base, but I didn’t want to throw it like that. Sometimes stuff happens when you don’t want it to happen.”
Aggressiveness cost the Cardinals in the bottom half of the inning as well. After Paul DeJong doubled with one out, a fielding error by Corey Seager led to Jose Martinez getting on base. DeJong reached third base as left fielder Cody Bellinger fielded the ball, but was waved home by third base coach Chris Maloney. He was out at the plate.
“You know, I think that’s one probably we’d like to have back and do over,” acknowledged Mike Matheny. “That’s one that’s got to be 100%. Shortstop comes up and makes a strong throw. That’s one you’d like to do over.”
The Cardinals successfully pulled off a double steal in the 4th inning as Tommy Pham and Matt Carpenter advanced with Jedd Gyorko at the plate. Gyorko followed with a line drive out into left field to plate Pham for the Cardinals only run of the game.
photo credit: Bill Greenblatt/UPI