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NLDS Game 1: St. Louis Lets Washington Off Hook

Gio Gonzalez
Latest posts by Tom Fitzgerald (see all)

Errors and offensive inefficiency will kill you every time. Someone said that once at the bar I go to for occasions such as the Super Bowl, my birthday, Wednesday nights. It’s obvious, I know. But sometimes drunken bar wisdom cannot be denied—wisdom is wisdom.

The saying was actually something more like, “these fn’ guys are fn’ blowin ‘ it tonight.” He was talking about the Red Sox, but we can apply that to any team at any time.

That’s exactly what St. Louis did on Sunday night during the NLDS—they blew it.

Blame who you will—but this one was a complete team effort. St. Louis left 10 men on base and their clutch hitting (if you believe in it) was non-existent.

The Cardinals inability to take advantage of Gio Gonzalez’s control issues stood as a glaring skid mark on the collective unders of the St. Louis Cardinals.

Gonzalez only allowed one hit in five innings. If that were the whole story, fine. But that’s just a small part of the story, it’s just a side note in what really should have been a complete Gonzalez implosion.

In five innings he also walked seven batters and threw a wild pitch—all glorious gifts.

What did St. Louis do with those gifts? They blew them. Even a man 14-beers-deep could figure that out. Note: I think there were two Manhattan’s thrown in there for good measure. Note #2: the bar I go to doesn’t have an ‘over serving’ policy.

The second inning was particularly bad for Gonzalez. St. Louis was actually able to take the lead without the help of one of those pesky things called “hits.” Gonzalez walked four hitters and threw a wild pitch as St. Louis went on to score two runs.

That would be the extent of St. Louis’ scoring on the night as they went 0 for 8 with runners in scoring position.

Jenifer Langosch of MLB.com noted:

“As impressive as the Cardinals’ overall offensive numbers have been this season, their inability to capitalize in the most opportune of run-scoring spots became an issue that plagued the club with regularity.”

That issue plagued them again on Sunday night.

A Tweet from ESPN Stats & Info is quite striking:

 

Just to repeat: St. Louis is the only team who actually lost when facing a pitcher who walked 7+ batters in 5-or-fewer innings. The only ones ever. We’re talking the history of baseball here.

St. Louis fans: we here at Baseball Jerks will not judge you if you seek out my bar and drink hard, drink fast and simply forget about today. Sometimes being a baseball fan is the hardest job one can imagine. But as our good friend @DadBoner says:

 

Just be sure to be awake for the 4:30 start on TBS.

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