It wasn’t pretty, but we will take it!
Kyle Lohse took the mound tonight and had quite the game, going 7 full innings allowing only four hits to make room for (drum roll please) Ryan Franklin.
Surely being ahead 6-0 we can allow Franklin to try to get his head together and not mess up the game….wrong again.
I’m getting ahead of myself though, let us first focus on the positives early on.
The game was looking VERY very good at a point, we saw solo home runs by Holliday in the 4th and Tyler Greene hit his first of the season in the 5th. The 7th inning was beautiful if you are a Cardinal fan. Hit after hit and driving runs in left and right to bring their last four runs of the game, something Cardinals fans have looked for as the last couple seasons the LOB stat at the end of the game usually consisted of a high number and lots of frustration.
Back to Ryan Franklin. With a 6 run lead, they brought in the beat up former closer to see if we could bring him back from Houston’s “Lights Out Lidge Disease” and make him an effective pitcher out of the pen yet again. This however was not the case at all. His stat line for two batters faced was 2 hits and 2 earned runs to bring his ERA on the season to 10.13. The Cardinal Nation / Ryan Franklin relationship is not looking good. Case in point, look at this Facebook status I came across earler:
“Quitting school and trying out for the Cardinals bullpen if Ryan Franklin can make it anyone can!” -TM
Obviously strained, the Cardinals try to see where Ryan can fit in this point on. He was once a very effective closer, WAS being the key word it looks like for the time being at least. Speaking of done for, Trever Miller was the next victim to not even last through one out after Ryan (as he has done a few times this season). Fernando Salas was the man it took to finally get the job done to finish the entire inning, though he gave up two more hits in the process.
Going into the 9th we were still up by 3 however and Eduardo Sanchez taking the mound that should have been enough to end the game. After observing the Cardinal bullpen lately you have learned to not look away.
He provded a good scare allowing 3 hits, 2 runs and left the tying run at second with two outs to Hunter Pence, the man who kicked off the Astros offense in Tuesdays game.
Luckily Eduardo gathered the strength to bring it all together and strike out Hunter Pence to officially end this nail biter and send us into Thursdays game with the series on the line.