I admit it, I was one of the handful of Cardinals fans who stayed up til 4 am to finish what I started—watching the Cardinals play the rubber game of the interleague series with the Royals. Whether it was a good idea to do so I will leave with the ages. The outcome was pretty much a certainty, given the conditions, but I pressed on anyway.
I am just going to blame it on age and fatigue, but those few who remained with me on Twitter last night got to witness me wired and angry. It started with anger over the way some spoiled rotten brat Cardinals fans acted on Twitter after the Cardinals lost their lead in the 9th inning. It ended with anger over MLB risking injury on players in order to not enforce a rule that they themselves created. A rule that would have robbed the win starved Royals of a victory. Yeah, the Royals wanted that win, I get that, but at what cost? Would it have been worth it to them if one or more of their players were injured? Heck, there were several of us who would have gladly forfeited the game to the Royals if that were possible if it meant that much to them. Anything to get our guys some rest and take them out of harm’s way. That was badly done MLB, either enforce your rules or change them if you don’t like the outcome.
So how did this debacle happen in the first place? Well, humans can’t control Mother Nature, although the rain was foreseen. All you had to do was look at radar to know what was coming. Nevertheless, they almost got the game in. Then there was the question of who came in to pitch the 9th and get the save for the Cardinals. Mike Matheny had declared closer Edward Mujica unavailable before the game started. After the fact we learned that Trevor Rosenthal was off limits too. Seth Maness had successfully pitched the 8th inning, and many thought he could have come back. Joe Kelly, who eventually closed the game anyway, was also available. But Matheny brought in the struggling Mitchell Boggs, into a situation that had failure written all over it. Most of us had read this book before and we knew the ending. Don’t get me wrong, I like Boggs, he’s a great guy and his current struggles sadden me to no end. But putting him in that situation was destined to do more harm than good. Matheny said after the game that he used Boggs because he had “experience” in the 9th inning. Um, yeah, but that experience was mostly bad. And unless my memory completely fails me, Joe Kelly has pitched the 9th inning before. Sorry Mike, but I ain’t buying what you are selling.
Anyhoo, what we all feared would happen, happened. Boggs blew the save, and then Matheny compounded the problem by bringing in Victor Marte, the $1 man who can’t pitch his way out of a paper bag. Marte promptly did what he does, made the situation worse. Then the rain came before Marte could do further damage and the rest is history. Bad history.
So what have we learned? MLB creates rules it doesn’t like enforcing. The Royals are a desperate team. It rains in St. Louis in May (that didn’t need to be learned, I just put that in for poetic license). And the St. Louis Cardinals still have bullpen issues they need to fix somehow. I personally learned that my temper is worse after midnight and that I am too old to stay up until 4 am. All-nighters are for college students.
On to the Giants.