You can put it on me:
- LaRussa (referring to Jon Jay’s defense): “On a couple of balls, (Jay) was too shallow. … That’s not his fault, its mine.”
- Wainwright: “You can put [the loss] on me today. I just didn’t make the pitches. It’s something I pride myself in.”
I’d do it again:
- LaRussa (referring to not holding Tabata on in the seventh): “I made the move that I thought gave us the best chance in that inning and to win the game. … I have no problem with anybody that has a different opinion.”
- Holliday (on his foul out in the ninth): “I’ve hit that ball hard a lot. It was a good pitch to hit. … Sometimes you don’t get the result you want.”
- Oquendo: Oquendo said he would make the same call again. “(Cedeño) got to the ball quick,” said Oquendo. “I’ve got the fourth hitter coming up. If (Cedeño) hesitates, it’s different but he got to the ball. I can’t take a chance there. Plus, he has a good arm.”
Well we certainly don’t shirk our responsibilities here at the ‘Stance, so… you can put this one on me. I put up a post after every game in the Cincinnati series, but following that last win I stopped – and the team lost four of five. I waited until they returned to their winning ways, posted – and they lost last night to Pittsburgh. So after each of my last posts, the team has lost.
This one’s on me. But I’d do it again (post about the Cardinals, that is).
Now a lot of hay will be made regarding LaRussa not holding the Tabata on, and Oquendo not sending Winn in the ninth on Pujols’ hit. Some will say either of those plays cost them the game. Tabata’s stolen base was only worth .010 on the WPA metric Fangraphs uses. I don’t have the time this AM to research what the WPA would be for a single with a runner on third and two out, but with a runner on third and one out that hit was worth .101 (Neil Walker’s single in the sixth). One inning later, a single with runners on second and third and 2 out was worth .286. Granted, that hit is weighted higher given the number of outs and the later inning. Pujols’ hit in the ninth was worth .176, and loaded the bases with one out. You gotta like your chances of scoring a runner from third with one out, especially with Matt Holliday stepping into the box.
No one play decides the game. Even after Tabata stole second, even after Winn was held at third, there was still another hitter due and another out to record. If anything this game was lost because the Cardinals couldn’t bring runners around to score between the first and ninth, despite having at least one guy on in every inning but the sixth. The accumulation of failure to do that left them vulnerable for Tabata/Walker to tie the game in the sixth, and for Walker to untie it in the seventh. Adam Wainwright is very, very good, but being asked to win when provided only 2 runs of support is a tough task – even for the guy who was leading the league in ERA going into last night.
With your ace on the mound you’re supposed to win. San Francisco pounded Cincinnati for the second straight game last night. This was an opportunity lost. We can probably kiss the 8-2 road trip goodbye now.
Quotes above are as reported in this article by Rick Hummel, which appeared on the STL Today website today. The italic verbiage in the Oquendo item above was originally written by Hummel.