Considering that Piniero threw 53 pitches to get the first 6 outs, the fact he survived into the seventh is mighty impressive. Although, the Padres deciding to swing at everything he threw up there after Gonzalez's HR in the third helped. To wit:
3rd inning: 9 pitches
4th inning: 10 pitches
5th inning: 11 pitches
6th inning: 15 pitches
7th inning: 8 pitches
Yep, he threw 53 pitches over his last 4 2/3 after throwing 53 in his first 2 innings. Given the state of the Cardinal bullpen this season, and the fact they would most likely have gotten Thompson in long relief, turning into a bunch of hackers was a grave tactical error by the Padres.
Then, with one on and two out, the bullpen implosion started. Reyes - two hits, inherited runner scores. McClellan - hit, walk*, inherited runner scores.
*Hey Home Plate Umpire - how is the pitch you called strike 3 to Holliday in the fifth and Venable in the sixth suddenly a ball for Venable in the seventh? To load the bases? Thanks for not being consistent. We already knew you were bad.
I guess Will Venable didn't get the memo regarding Molina. Appreciate you getting picked off, guy; the Cardinals were on the ropes right there.
If I was a pitcher, Ryan Ludwick would never get a pitch that didn't sweep across the plate from right to left. Ludwick can't hit that pitch. Why would he get anything else? His seventh inning double on that pitch is an excellent example of 'even a blind squirrel sometimes gets a nut,' nothing more.
Is it just me, or does Matt Holliday swing at an awful lot of first pitches? Also, is it me or is Pujols pressing a little bit?
Quite a play to plate the seventh Cardinal run. I wonder if DeRosa went on his own there, or if that was what the dugout had told him to do.
Khalil Greene sighting!
Sure looked like Molina got in under the tag at home. The Padre broadcast team said, 'Well, I guess they don't trust Colby Rasmus!" after that play. Uh, Rasmus was 6 for 9 in this series when that play happened. Perhaps LaRussa called the double steal because he was bored? Because Thatcher wasn't paying attention to the runner on third? Because he wanted someone on in front of Pujols? Because he was swatting at a bee and the sign was misinterpreted by Oquendo? Whatever his reason, it wasn't due to a lack of confidence in Rasmus.
Motte pitched much better tonight than last night, retiring both hitters he faced. I still think he should be sent down, but at least he did his job tonight.
Can't complain about results. Cards stay 4.5 games up on Chicago, and look to sweep tomorrow.
2 hours ago