I'm going to just keep telling myself three out of four ain't bad. But I can't block out of my mind that one out of five is, in fact, terrible.
The Cardinals blew a one-run lead in the bottom of the ninth inning when Trever Miller gave up a single off the end of the bat and then Ryan Franklin came in and gave up a two-strike home run to the only batter he faced, giving the Dodgers a 2-1 win.
They can put a happy face on it if they want. But the Cardinals are going to have to do something to address the smoking hole in the roster where there was once a decent closer. Franklin has blown half of the team's losses and he must have about zero confidence right now. He's not losing on dying quails or seeing eye singles. He's serving up tape measure homers every time out.
Chris Carpenter pitched seven excellent innings. But the red hot Cardinals bats of the last week were nowhere to be found. The Birds managed only two hits while he was on the hill. But they had a chance to give him a win in the eighth when Yadier Molina found himself of third base with only one out and Jon Jay at the dish. Jay struck out, however, and the Cardinals couldn't dent the scoreboard until the top of the ninth.
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Matt Holliday, who had three of the four hits the St. Louis nine totaled in the game, doubled with two outs. Lance Berkman was intentionally walked. But third baseman David Freese blooped a ball to right field that scored the go-ahead run. Catcher Yadier Molina nearly did the same thing, but former Cardinals second sacker Aaron Miles made a spectacular running catch to end the threat.
The Redbirds come home from their west coast swing with an 8-8 record overall and their second consecutive series victory. They host the Nationals and the Reds at Busch Stadium over the next week.
Cardinals Star of the Game: Holliday
Cardinals Play of the Game: In the third inning with runners at the corners and two out, Albert Pujols snagged a foot-high line drive right over first base bag that likely would have given Los Angeles a two-run lead.
Lowlight: Franklin's fourth blown save in five tries. This was probably the hardest save chance Franklin has had yet, starting the inning with a runner on second and no outs. But that's why he gets the big bucks, isn't it? It's time the Cardinals give Mitchell Boggs, Jason Motte a crack at finishing games.