CHICAGO – Regardless of which Cardinals have won in the standings, or which Matt Carpenter saved the Cardinals from a fierce, corrosive loss, their relief on Thursday was muted as they may have lost for a significant stretch of divisional.
] Immediately after the Cardinals and closer Carlos Martinez had moved a threefold advantage in the ninth inning, Carpenter responded with a solo Homer and sent the Cardinals to a 5: 4 win on the tenth inning Thursday night at Wrigley Field. Carpenter was only in the game at the time, beating the ball because Kolten Wong had to leave the game with an injury to his left Achilles tendon. The severity of the injury was not immediately known as the second baseman continued to undergo tests. The team called him "day by day". And then his team-mates went out of their way to take an important step to extend the season for his return.
The Cardinals had to face Craig Kimbrel on his first day after injury in the ninth inning of the Cubs rally. The long shutdown hit the first blow he faced to get Carpenter to Wong's usual second place. Carpenter pounced on the first pitch he saw ̵
With Carpenter's 13th Homer of the season as the only cushion, Giovanny Gallegos scored the first win for the Cardinals of the season at Wrigley with a scoreless 10th.
The masterpiece that Jack Flaherty offered with eight superb innings required only a few brushstrokes in the ninth inning to turn into a draw and make a decision.
The clever ninth inning became a race between Martinez and the Cubs – one could get three outs before the other got three runs. The Cubs got him on a walk. The first two batters of the innings reached the base, and Ben Zobrist started the scoring with an RBI double thread along the first baseline. The goal of Zobrist brought the binding in the goal position. He finishes third in an infield single from Willson Contreras and scores at Jason Heywards Groundout. By this time, Martinez had already handed over the hill to the left Andrew Miller. The veteran Reliever got the Heyward Groundout and a flyout to turn the game into extra innings.
Martinez had a lead of three runs on his 22nd save of the season and stayed with blown Save, three hits against it, and all three earned runs.
The rescue of the carpenter meant that the cardinals built up a first-place advantage of four games on the Cubs and left their arch-rivals in third place in the division. Milwaukee Brewers, the division's defending champions, remained behind in three games behind the Cardinals. The win on Thursday ensures that, no matter what happens in the three remaining games of the series, the Cardinals will leave Chicago with a postseason opportunity. The Cubs can not catch them – this weekend.
The Cardinals and Cubs have six games left to play, including a series of three games in a week to end the regular season at Busch Stadium.
Flaherty is expecting them, if necessary.
Planned for a meaningful start at Wrigley Field a year ago, Flaherty made the best of getting it on Thursday. The starter in the second year allowed a single run – on a solo homer – as he leafed through eight innings on 118 pitches. He hit eight, shaving his total ERA for the first time on April 10th to less than 3.00. Since the All-Star breakthrough, the right-handed has allowed 10 earned runs in 85 1/3 innings for an ERA of 1.05. In this period, two wins against the Cubs are included, in which he allows a run in one go in 15 innings.
The Cardinals had lost all six of their previous games at Wrigley this season, but manager Mike Shildt warned against reading too much about the losing streak. They had not been to Wrigley since June. That was when Flaherty did not find his groove before Paul Goldschmidt got his Player of the Month Award and before the former Cub Dexter Fowler took the lead, let alone Wong joined him at the top of the lineup. We have another team as some of the other teams that come here, "said Shildt before the game. "I feel good about what we bring, I think we've grown, no question, this team has improved over the season, that's what we do."
Take Tommy Edman, for example.
Edman made his major league debut at Wrigley early this season, and has since then managed to find his way into an everyday role. He showed why Thursday. Edman prevailed with a 1-0 lead over the third and scored in the doubles a goal. He had a stand-up triple in the right corner to open the fifth, and hit Baders first RBI. After Cubs starter Kyle Hendricks left the game, Bader added another RBI in the sixth as the Cardinals expanded their lead during an innings that included Goldschmid's savvy base runner. Goldschmidt raced home for a ball in the left field for third place. The throw hit him in one step, but when Cubs catcher Contreras lost control, Goldschmidt turned and grabbed the plate as he passed.
The game began with the return of a handful of injured Cubs – it was no longer shocking that Anthony Rizzo did – and then Wong's departure for the Cardinals.
Wong hit Rizzo in the fifth inning at first base with a groundball, and Wong's attempt to score a hit wounded him paralyzing left. Wong stopped at the base after being kicked out, grabbed his leg, and then hobbled off the field, accompanied by a team coach. The severity of the injury was not immediately known, although the team described Wong's availability as "day by day" before he could be used for a closer scan of the injury.
Wong's team-mate recently described him as the "MVP of the team." For the season, given the influence Wong had as the second baseman of the Gold Glove Award caliber and the rise he had in the line-up. Wong made his way to No. 2 in the Order, scoring 0.342, 0.410 percent on the base and 0.900 OPS since the All-Star break. He was the most consistent hitter in the team and a reliable source to get to the bottom. Wong's .361-percent base is the second-highest value of his career, surpassing only .376 in 2017.
The Cardinals were relatively untouched by injuries in late September, outside the long-term recovery of Jordan Hicks (elbow).  Consider the Cubs as a contrast.
The series of games that could determine whether the Cubs retain power in the division were not expected to have players with MVP caliber Rizzo and Javier Baez (broken thumb) and senior players. Closer to Craig Kimbrel or Infielder Addison Russell. All four returned to the team somehow on Thursday, none more dramatic than Rizzo. Four days after the club announced it would be in a protective shoe, Rizzo was in the lineup instead. The first baseman tested his injured ankle by running in the right field while his team-mates were warming up for the game, and the Cardinals were informed within 20 minutes of the first pitch that Rizzo was the Cubs' leading batsman for the game would be.
A few innings for his Willis Reed moment.
Rizzo lost a run after 2 ½ innings and hit a 2-out solo homer to tie the game 1-1 in the third. The homerun, its 27th of the season, came home with a 95 mph fast ball from Flaherty – the first playing field of the At-Bat. He had only tested Rizzo in the first inning with strikes and knocked out the left-hander hugging the plate. The homer against Flaherty got to the bottom of the same innings when Flaherty got the most out of Rizzo.
With two runners Flaherty threw a motley on the side of the third base of the hill. As third baseman Kris Bryant retreated to his base, Rizzo, who was clearly limited by his ankle, had to return from his side of the field to retrieve the ball. Hendricks did not pursue him. Flaherty overcame the throw to load the bases without outs. Utilizing Rizzo's limited reach proved pivotal when Fowler started a double, but scored for the 1-0 lead.
After Rizzo's Homer ended the game in a draw, Flaherty held the Cubs there. He eliminated three of the next seven fights and dropped out at a point out of 10 consecutive Cubs.
Both dugouts had problems with the strike zone of home plate referee Bill Welke. Flaherty caught Kris Bryant looking at the fastballs on the inside edge, which the former MVP held too far in for a strike. On the other hand, Hendricks twice made Marcell Ozuna see a Called Strike Three on an off-speed pitch that went over the edge of the field.
Wong, Cardinal's leading batsman in the second half, leaves the game with thigh injury
The parade of boys who returned after an injury – or returned half after an injury – made headlines on Thursday because they had a list of stars dealing with injuries.
The Cardinals, on the other hand, remained relatively unscathed.
That changed with the fifth inning.
Second baseman Kolten Wong, who was arguably the best cardinals player in the second half, was eliminated from the game with an injury to the left Achilles tendon. The cardinals announced the diagnosis during the game. The severity of the injury is not yet known.
Wong sped out of the racket's box on a groundball to first base, but relaxed as he approached the bag and was thrown out. He grabbed his leg and ran visibly tender, before he turned and limped to the shelter, accompanied by a team coach.
The Cardinals went 2-1 in the sixth inning. Both runs were scored by Tommy Edman. The rookie infielder moved from third to second place after Wong's injury, and Matt Carpenter took third place to take second place to Wong.
Slowed by injury, Rizzo and Cubs pull a quick win against Cardinals. he will run away
The giveaway was the socks.
Just before Thursday's first game at Wrigley Field, Anthony Rizzo, in full uniform, emerged from the boys' shelter and pulled up his socks. He should sit in a protective boot throughout the series and not let the stirrups flash during the first game of the series.
Nevertheless, he ran sprints in the right field, as if he would round off a base The Cubs announced in less than 20 minutes before the first field, a new cast with Rizzo.
He could be the opener. Or he could be Willis Reed. It is unclear.
Rizzo injured his ankle at Wrigley Field on Sunday at the ball game, and his cleat took a punch in the infield, which is still not completely healed. He used a scooter to move around the clubhouse, and the Cubs had openly announced that he would not be available for the series against the Cardinals.
Here is the new lineup of the Cubs:
2. Nicholas Castellanos, RF
Winless at Wrigley, Cardinals want to solve Hendricks and consolidate first place
The end result came one hour, maybe an hour after the Cardinals arrived at their hotel in Chicago on the eve of the most significant series ever played between these two legendary rivals in this late regular season.
The Cubs had lost in extra innings against the Cincinnati Reds.
This result fell The Cardinals have won three games before in the division and reduced the magical number of cardinals to eight. This result meant that the Cubs had to drive throughout the season on the Cardinals and the first place in the National League Central.
Of course, they wiped out on Wrigley Field all season.
The Cardinals score for the four-game series on the north side in six previous games without a win. They were driven crazy by starter Kyle Hendricks, scored by a longtime farm laborer, Kris Bryant struck a grand slam and Kyle Schwarber made them more headache than any other team.
beat more than 20 runs 0-6 in these six games and only lost three or fewer runs twice in this race.
Some of the games were not scarce.
Once they hit four runs on Jon Lester for a 4-0 lead and still lost 9: 4. You have found all kinds of ways to lose.
To claim the division, they must find a way to win.
The boys arrive due to injury, as the first base Anthony Rizzo (ankle) is in a shoe and is out of the series. Javy Baez (broken thumb) stays out indefinitely. The closer Craig Kimbrel has also dealt with an injury (update: Kimbrel is available from the Bulls' Bullpen on Thursday night and Baez pinches the barrel if necessary). The Cubs are not the squad they envisioned and the Cardinals are not imagined the offense they commit.
The first game of the weekend series is an encore for the first game of the year in Wrigley between these two teams. Jack Flaherty kicked off Kyle Hendricks, who scored an 81-pitch shutout against the Cardinals in early May. These were the fewest pitches that a Cub Pitcher since Jon Lieber needed in 2001 for a shutout. Hendricks & # 39; gift is his change and how he can get teams from the zone to make weak contact. He's the type of pitcher the Cardinals have been struggling with in the last few weeks – one who is eager to cut corners and who is able to expand the zone.
Here's the lineup that Hendricks will face – and back Flaherty:
In his career, Flaherty has completed four starts at Wrigley and he has a 1-2 victory with a 6.35 ERA. He is 2-2 with 3.60 ERA in eight games (seven starts) against the Cubs, and one of the first brilliant starts of his dominance in the second half came at Busch Stadium against the Cubs over the close of trade. He beat nine and kept the Cubs scoreless by seven innings.
Check out all afternoon and evening here at Cardinal Beat and STLtoday.com to talk about the Confines, who were not so friendly for the Cardinals this season. They could see that this line is coming.