In a fairly straight forward battle of the Central’s first vs. worst, the Astros ended up prevailing to take the first game of the three game stint. A promising Pujols-less performance was eventually ended Tuesday night in the bottom of the ninth thanks to another blown save by the Cardinals bullpen, this time Mitchell Boggs was the victim.
The Cardinals began to blow the game open, or so it seemed in the top of the 4th. Everything just seemed to be going their way on the strength of Nick Punto’s double that brought in David Freese and the very next batter Daniel Descalso who triples to right to score Yadi and Punto on another one of Descalso’s promising affairs, going 3 for 3 with 3 RBIs.
Hunter Pence was the first batter faced in the bottom of the fourth and homered to left field (his 4th on the season) to make up for that triple that passed him just half an inning before, bringing the score to 3-1 in favor of the Cardinals.
Jaime Garcia had the one slip up thus far but overall looked great up until the bottom of the 6th which turned around the entire attitude of the game. The Astros just started slapping hits left and right, Jaime stayed in long enough for them to tie the game, but Miguel Batista came in to finish off the inning and allow one last run (unearned) to give the Astros their first lead at 4-3.
The top of the 8th the Cardinals caught up thanks to another hit by Descalso in the form of a double to bring Yadi home yet again to tie the game 4-4.
The top of the 9th started out with a big double from Matt Holliday, the next batter Lance Berkman doubled to center field to give the Cardinals the lead back at 5-4, which seemed to be a fitting end for the returning Berkman in his first game in Houston as a member of an opposing team.
The bottom of the 9th Tony passed the ball to the man who looks to be trying to fulfill Ryan Franklin’s old role as closer, Mitchell Boggs who came in to replace Jason Motte. Hit after hit and a fielding error by Mitchell Boggs himself led to Bill Hall slapping the winning single past the Shortstop to score Michael Bourn to win the game.
This is just Boggs first blown save of the season, but given Franklin’s past status it leads the fans to think what is it about a bullpen that has been so steady this season to become so prone to blow saves in game changing situations.
Topics: Albert Pujols, Bill Hall, Daniel Descalso, David Freese, Houston Astros, Hunter Pence, Jaime Garcia, Jason Motte, Lance Berkman, Matt Holliday, Michael Bourn, Miguel Batista, Mitchell Boggs, Nick Punto, St Louis Cardinals, Yadier Molina