After starting off their four-game set with a win, all the Cardinals needed to do was win one of the next three to salvage at least a split or take two of three to win the series by and impressive three games to one.
But, after a pair of frustrating losses in the middle game, the Birds find themselves desperately needing a win just to avoid losing the series by three games to one with a 7-5 Saturday loss.
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There's just no excuse for the way this series has played out. The Cardinals have done well early in games -- at one point leading 4-1 Saturday. But their flaws have become obvious: They don't have the bullpen or the bench to compete into the late innings.
These are problems that should have already been fixed and that could still be fixed. As frustrating as it is for fans, it has to be gutwrenching for the core of this team to know that they have the main pieces in place to be really good. But when ownership cut corners, it effectively cut the legs out from under this team.
Cardinals Star of the Game: Yadier Molina was only 1-4 at the plate. But after failing to get a bunt down in the seventh inning he battled mightily to stay alive, fouling off pitch after pitch until he got one he could handle, Molina eventually doubled down the third base line and tied the game in the seventh inning.
Lowlight: The Cardinals had five runners on base in the seventh and eighth innings with no one out and could only score a single run.