After more than 4.5 hours of round-trip baseball, the St. Louis Cardinals are finally in control of their playoff destiny once again.
Edmundo Sosa kicked off in an 11th roundthree-pointers and the Cardinals regained the playoff position on Tuesday night with a 7-6 victory over the New York Mets.
"We're looking through the windshield, not the rearview mirror "said manager Mike Shildt. "We should always go out and mind our own business every night.
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New York scored twice down from the 11t h and had two runners on board when Kwang Hyun Kim pulled pinch hitter Albert Almora Jr. out to the field for his second career save - finally wrapping up a mentally grueling game that lasted 4 hours, 34 minutes.
"It was a whale from a baseball game, "said Shildt. "We stayed with it.
Pinch hitter Andrew Knizner delivered a two-run single in the first half to give the Cardinals some breathing space as they pushed the equalizer home by Javier Baez. in the ninth.
Tyler O 'Neill scored three runs for the Cardinals. They have won four straight and six of seven wins to climb into the NL's second wild card slot by a half-game against Cincinnati, who lost 6-5 to Pittsburgh.
"All the world was used thisit was available "said Shildt. " When you step into a game like tonight, it turns into guts. "
This is the first time the Cardinals (75- 69) have occupied a playoff berth since hanging on to a slim lead in NL Central on May 30. They lost four games of the season under .500 on June 27.
"That says a lot about this team, " said Sosa.
Nearest demotion Alex Reyes (8-8) helped Francisco Lindor break through in a double play end of inning with runners in the corners in the 10th, shooting the Cardinals. First baseman Paul Goldschmidt stepped on the sack and threw home, trapping Kevin Pillar in a rundown. "It was a game saver. "
" Gamers are really sincere about going od in all areas "he added. " It was on display tonight. "
Then the Cardinals got three singles in the 11th against therookie Jake Reed (0-1), just activated from the injured list.
Both teams used eight pitchers. O 'Neill gave St. Louis the lead 4-3 with a two-run homer in the eighth against reliever Jeurys Familia, who was booed from the mound.
Baez equalized with a drive off in the ninth, sending Giovanny Gallegos 'first pitch to left field past a leaping O ' Neill and over the orange home run line on the blue wall.
It was the first time Baez had equalized a league game with a homer in the ninth inning or later. A crowd of 21,825 people from Citi Field chanted his name.
Just a few weeks ago, Baez was looked down upon by Mets roots and the front office for a thumbs-down gesture which was a sting to boo the fans.
The free Baez also walked three times for the second time in his career and managed a simple bunt in the first set which gavee in New York a 2-0 lead.
"We don 't come out in situations to score more runs, " said manager Luis Rojas.
O 'Neill hit an RBI single and scored in the fourth as the Cardinals erased a two-point deficit to starter Marcus Stroman.
Michael Conforto produced two runs for the Mets , who lost the first two games of this pivotal series - damaging their diminished playoff odds.
"We have to compete. That 's the only thing we can do right now. "said Baez.
Mets: the receiver of the second rope Tomas Nido (sprained left thumb) and Reed (inflammation of the right forearm) were reinstated from the 10- list of injured per day. Nido hit huiTenth and went 0 for 3. Reserve receiver Patrick Mazeika and reliever Yennsy Diaz were selected for the triple A Syracuse. ... Rojas said there was a chance Brandon Nimmo (tight right hamstring) could come back this weekend against Philadelphia. ... RHP Noah Syndergaard is expected to face hitters in the coming days. Syndergaard was slowed down in her recovery from Tommy John surgery in March 2020 by a painful elbow and a positive COVID-19 test.
BLACK AND BLUE
With a welt close to the ear and a minnow under one eye, Junior umpire Valentine worked home plate as expected. Valentine remained in the game on Monday night at first base after being pierced on the right side of his face by a savage throw from Sosa to the shortstop that spilled blood in the second inning.
Cardinals: Jon Lester (5-6, 4.75 ERA) throws Wednesday night in the finale of the series. The 37-year-old southpaw has won six straight decisions against the Mets and is 8-1 with a 3.18 ERA in 11 career regular-season starts against them. He's 2-1 with a 4.30 ERA in eight outings for St. Louis since his July 30 trade with Washington. Last time around, Lester allowed two runs and three hits in seven innings in a no-decision against Cincinnati.
Mets: RHP Rookie Tylor Megill (3-4, 4.06) struck out 10 strikes in seven sets, the two best in his career, in a 10-3 victory last Friday against the Yankees.