Update (7:31 PM EST): Lynn has been diagnosed with a mild right ankle strain, per MLB.com’s Jenifer Langosch.
Cardinals starter Lance Lynn left after facing one batter in the top of the eighth inning, as he injured his right ankle making a throw on what turned out to be an infield single for Giants pinch-hitter Juan Perez. Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch tweeted that Lynn’s ankle “folded like origami” attempting to make the throw to first base. Fortunately, Lynn was able to walk off the field under his own power.
Lynn entered the inning having shut the Giants out over seven innings on five hits and two walks with two strikeouts. He was relieved by Randy Choate, who struck out Nori Aoki before giving way to Seth Maness. Maness maintained the Cardinals’ 4-0 lead by inducing a 6-4-3 double play out of Matt Duffy. The Cardinals would tack on two more runs to put the game further out of reach.
Lynn, 28, has a 2.80 ERA with a 148/53 K/BB ratio in 147 2/3 innings this season. We should learn more about his condition later this evening.
The Cardinals led the Cubs by a run in the seventh inning of last night’s nightcap. There were two men on and Addison Russell was at the plate. Russell chopped one down the first base line that first hit in foul territory then skipped past first base, also in foul territory.
Yet a run scored, a runner went to third base and Russell ended up safe at first. Cardinals pitcher Seth Maness was ejected on the play arguing, quite understandably, that a game-tying RBI should not happen on an obviously foul ball.
MLB doesn’t have the video embeddable, but you can watch the play here. The announcers entertain the notion that the ball crossed over the bag in fair territory, but for that to be possible the ball would have to travel in such a manner as to make the Warren Commission’s magic bullet look like the straightest thing ever.
More importantly, you can get Derrick Goold’s story about the play and why it was not reviewable by replay. The short version: fair/foul plays on the base lines that occur in front of the umpires are judgment calls. Despite the fact that fair/foul calls in the outfield are not. All of this part of the grand, messy bargain that is the current replay system.
A bargain, as Goold argues and as we at HBT have argued ever since the idea of replay was first broached, is severely flawed by virtue of the challenge system and the lack of a replay ump in the booth who can watch the game in real time and immediately fix calls. Add to it the idea that field umpires are entitled to deference, either on calls that are reviewed or the category of calls, like this one, which are not subject to it.
The system we have is a better one than no system. But it is not the best system that could be implemented, not because of unsolvable technological challenges, but because the system that was adopted was itself flawed. What makes it all the more galling is that neither John Schuerholz, Joe Torre, Bud Selig or anyone else involved in its implementation ever explained why we must have challenges or why we can’t have a booth ump.
It was just asserted — like so many other things baseball does — that it was just fine and all alternatives had been considered and none of you worry your pretty little heads about it.
We should be used to this by now, no? The late comebacks, the weird baseball happenings. Baseball got weird in the top of the ninth when Cardinals closer Trevor Rosenthal attempted to close out a 4-3 win for the Cardinals in Game 2 of the NLCS against the Giants.
Rosenthal was quickly in hot water. After striking out Brandon Crawford to begin the frame, pinch-hitter Andrew Susac and Juan Perez hit back-to-back singles. Following Susac’s single, he was pinch-run for by Matt Duffy. This is an important detail. Rosenthal got Gregor Blanco on a hard line drive to shortstop Jhonny Peralta, allowing the closer to see light at the end of the tunnel. It could have been an inning-ending double play, but the speedy Duffy was able to get back to second base; Peralta didn’t even bother attempting to double him off.
Rosenthal got ahead of Joe Panik 0-2, but the rookie worked the count full. With two outs and a full count, Duffy and Perez were running on the pitch. Rosenthal spiked a fastball in the dirt, which got away from catcher Tony Cruz (who replaced Yadier Molina following an oblique injury in the sixth inning). Duffy never stopped running. He wheeled around third, barreling towards home plate to score ahead of Cruz’s throw to Rosenthal covering the plate. Rosenthal then walked Buster Posey to load the bases before departing in favor of Seth Maness. Maness got Sandoval on a 1-3 ground out to end the inning.
NLCS Game 2 is headed into the bottom of the ninth with a 4-4 tie.
The Cardinals sent the Brewers to their ninth straight loss with a 3-2 victory this evening at Miller Park. They have now won six in a row and own a four-game lead over Milwaukee in the National League Central.
The Cardinals got on the board first with a two-run single from Yadier Molina against Wily Peralta in the first inning. Kolten Wong added an RBI single in the third, which stood up as the difference in the ballgame. Making his first start since June 17, Michael Wacha allowed one run over three innings before giving way to the bullpen. Marco Gonzales allowed a solo homer to Rickie Weeks in his 2 1/3 innings of work before Seth Maness, Carlos Martinez, Pat Neshek, and Trevor Rosenthal finished off the victory.
The Brewers left 11 men on base in this one, so they had their share of chances, but the Cardinals held firm thanks to some excellent outfield defense. Jon Jay made a pair of excellent catches to rob Khris Davis of run-scoring hits. Peter Bourjos later added an impressive running catch on a long fly ball off the bat of Jordan Schafer in the eighth inning. It’s worth noting that the fly ball from Schafer came after a failed bunt attempt from Martin Maldonado with two on and nobody out, which would have moved a runner over to third base. It was that kind of night for the Brewers.
As Tom Haudricourt of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel writes, the Brewers led the National League Central by 1 1/2 games before the start of their losing streak. They now find themselves tied with the Braves for the second Wild Card spot.
The Brewers and Cardinals will play three more games this weekend. Mike Fiers will try to stop the slide for Milwaukee tomorrow night while St. Louis will counter with John Lackey.