Jordan Hicks' error costs the Cardinals a game
It seems that there are few things more difficult for major league pitchers than throwing to bases, and that was on full display when the Cardinals lost a wild game on a routine throw to first by relief pitcher Jordan Hicks.
The Cardinals had found themselves in a 5-0 hole after two innings but managed to battle back and tie the game in the top of the fourth inning. The Marlins later pulled ahead again, and with the Cardinals down 8-7 with two outs in the top of the ninth inning, rookie phenom Jordan Walker strode to the plate and delivered a shot to left center field to tie the game at eight.
But what could have been a lasting memory of Walker's first season was quickly overshadowed after a walk and a single put runners on first and second. Joey Wendle hit a dribbling grounder to Hicks, who uncorked the ball over the head of first baseman Paul Goldschmidt to allow both runners to score and the Marlins to win the game.
This error epitomized the Cardinals' defensive issues in 2023. The team backslid massively in that department, dwindling from 70 defensive runs saved above average in 2022 to six below average this season. The pitching bore the brunt of the blame for the Cardinals' troubles in 2023, but the defensive issues can’t be overlooked.