St. Louis Cardinals: Cards collapse after strong start against Mets

ST. LOUIS, MO - APRIL 24: Luke Weaver
ST. LOUIS, MO - APRIL 24: Luke Weaver /

After getting a 4-1 through 4, the St. Louis Cardinals would end up losing 6-5 in extra innings.

Disappointing would be an understatement when describing last night’s loss at the hands of the New York Mets. St. Louis Cardinals pitchers walked eight batters and allowed six hits, three of those walks coming in a disastrous fifth inning.

After a two run home run by Tommy Pham and RBI hits from Kolten Wong and Luke Weaver, the St. Louis Cardinals were up 4-1 heading into the fifth. The Mets got their run on an RBI “triple” by Jay Bruce. Bruce hit a sinking line drive in front of Marcell Ozuna who made an awkward attempt at fielding it. Ozuna whiffed on his attempt and the ball rolled all the way to the left field wall, allowing Todd Frazier to score.

Thankfully that was the only run the Mets scored that inning as Wong made an unbelievable stop at second base and Weaver got a strikeout and ground out after a walk. Weaver, who already walked two batters through four frames, would issue walks to Wilmer Flores and Michael Conforto with two outs.

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With Yoenis Cespedes stepping up to the dish, Mike Matheny decided to stick with Weaver who looked gassed and had not thrown a strike over his last eight pitches. This decision would not pay off, as Weaver left a 3-1 change-up down the middle and Cespedes did not miss, cranking it 463 feet to tie the ballgame.

After a walk to Asdrubal Cabrera, Weaver’s night was finished as he allowed four runs on two hits while walking six and striking out four. Dexter Fowler and Paul DeJong would come through in the bottom half as they got back-to-back two out doubles to reclaim the lead.

A scoreless sixth and seventh would bring us to the eighth where Jordan Hicks would do the unthinkable.

The electric right hander walked the leadoff man in Frazier and then Bruce would single to right which advanced Frazier to third. Then, it happened. Jordan Hicks allowed an earned run on an Adrian Gonzalez sacrifice fly to left and the Mets tied the game up at five.

Luke Gregerson would come in and got the final two outs of the eighth and Paul Sewald would put the Cardinals down 1-2-3 in the bottom half. Greg Holland pitched in the ninth and got a 1-2-3 inning of his own, striking out Brandon Nimmo and Cespedes in the process.

In the bottom of the ninth the Cardinals had a golden opportunity to walk it off after a Matt Carpenter walk was followed up by a single from Pham. However, Jose Martinez would strike out on a slider and Ozuna hit into a double play. Matt Bowman entered in the tenth and got two outs after making Frazier hit into a double play, but Bruce would homer to center on a pitch low and away to give the Mets the lead.

Jeurys Familia would put the hometown boys away with a strikeout of DeJong to wrap up a heartbreaking loss for the Cardinals in St. Louis.

Third Star: CF Tommy Pham (3-3, R, 2 RBI, HR, 2 BB)

Pham got the scoring started with a two run shot in the first and got on base in every plate appearance. Pham continues to be a consistent source of production among the  St. Louis Cardinals outfielders and the team in general.

Second Star: LF Yoenis Cespedes (1-5, R, 3 RBI, HR)

Cespedes may have only had one hit, but his hit was a big one in the literal and figurative sense. The 463 foot tater to tie the game in the fifth was the third longest home run by an opposing player in Busch Stadium III.

First Star: RF Jay Bruce (3-5, R, 2 RBI, 3B, GW HR)

Bruce was struggling mightily entering last night’s contest (.097/.200/.161 in last 35 PA), but facing a familiar foe helps you find your groove. Bruce drove in the first Mets run and the final Mets run while coming up a double short of the cycle.

Next: A deep look at Holland

The Cardinals play the Mets again tonight at 7:15pm CT as Michael Wacha (3-1 4.22) takes on Steven Matz (1-1 4.42).