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[personal profile] indecisionwins
I think the Cardinals-Mets baseball game tonight has to be about most exciting, dramatic baseball game I've ever seen. And somehow, despite being pretty mediocre since, like, June...the Cardinals are going to the World Series. Now, I don't think they have much of a chance against Detroit...but, nobody thought they had a chance in the playoffs at all, so hey.

The highlights, for people who weren't following:
--The catch. So Scott Rolen has generally been good for the Cardinals, despite getting run out of Philly a few years ago. But for the past couple of months, because his shoulder has been bothering him, he hasn't been able to hit much at all. And in the playoffs, he's been REALLY horrible hitting. And, it's been bad enough that he's not talking to the manager, because La Russa is mad that Rolen wasn't completely honest about being injured. So he comes up with one guy on base, and I at least figure that, once again, he's not going to do anything useful. But he hits a long fly ball...to the wall...and the Mets left fielder makes an amazing catch, 2 feet over the wall. And then, he catches the runner who was on base, who apparently assumed that there was no way the ball would be caught, so since it was, they doubled him off also. So instead of the Cardinals taking the lead, and Rolen FINALLY doing something big for the Cardinals...the inning was over, and the game was still tied. The next inning, Rolen ended up making a huge error on defense, which he almost never does...maybe partly because he was still thinking about what happened the last inning. But the Cardinals' pitcher managed to pitch around it, and still, the game was tied.

--The ending. After the Cardinals got a home run by their catcher, who's really not a very good hitter, to take the lead in the top of the 9th, the Mets loaded the bases in the bottom of the 9th, against the Cardinals' rookie closer. He's been good, but he's also only done it about 5-10 times, since the Cardinals' regular closer was injured. So he got nervous, trying to close out game 7 of the NLCS, and the Mets end up loading the bases. And with 2 outs, the hitter is Carlos Beltran. He's the Mets' best hitter, and a guy who has KILLED the Cardinals in the NLCS, especially in 2004, when he was with Houston, but at times this year also. And all he has to do is get a base hit to tie the game...or an extra-base hit or a home run to win the game, and the series. So it was a perfect setup for the Mets to end up coming back and winning... But somehow, Wainwright calms down, and strikes out Beltran on three straight pitches. And that was it--the Cardinals won.

There was more, but those were the biggest highlights. I've calmed down some since I started this post, though, and I'm tired anyway, so I'll leave it at that. But yeah...the game was pretty amazing... The thing is, I wasn't even ecstatic, so much as amazed at the perfect dramatic tension in EVERYTHING, and that the Cardinals actually managed to win. Now, hopefully they'll manage to do at least a little bit better than in their last trip to the World Series...but we'll see about that...

Date: 2006-10-20 07:21 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] arctangent.livejournal.com
Shit, I know. I haven't been following the playoffs at all, but I randomly turned on the game while eating a late dinner and I got completely sucked into it. It was all the drama you could've possibly asked for from this game. The tense, shut-out series of innings punctuated by moments of glory instantaneously negated by other moments of glory (the sudden unexpected ALMOST-home-run followed by a just as sudden ridiculous amazing catch, OMG)... yeah. And the final strikeout totally caught me with my head spinning. Walking a guy on base just before that, I was thinking, "He's clutching, he's clutching... what's he gonna do now HOLY SHIT HE JUST WON THE GAME".

Yeah.

It more than makes up for all the Fox shows I want to watch being preempted by baseball this whole month (in that I vaguely suspect giving them more episodes per season would just push the quality down).

Date: 2006-10-20 07:32 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] arctangent.livejournal.com
(I just lost the game, BTW.)

And yeah, I was only vaguely aware of all the subtext, but it was great seeing Rolen and La Russa jumping up and down and hugging each other and screaming and the Fox announcer guy going, "Hey, I guess you guys are on speaking terms now, huh?"

And I never actually connect with people's faces in sports games, and yet I totally *noticed* the tension streaming off Wainwright's face, being only partly aware of the subtext (the announcers mentioned something about how he'd never closed a game before this series, and I suddenly thought, "Wait, his first few times closing a game and now it's Game 7 of the NLCS?" -- that was muddled somewhat in my head, since I wasn't exactly clear on who was who) but it was totally a cinematic moment when he struck out Beltran. The camera was on him as you saw his face harden and the glint of confidence beam into his eye. It was fucking awesome.

Date: 2006-10-20 09:01 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] gallusgallus.livejournal.com
Let's keep the "Sports" and "Subtext" sections of Mike's life separate.

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Michael

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