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What I love about baseball is that sometimes you can see things in games that you've never seen before and sometimes you even see a lot of chaos that you didn't expect. This game between the Colts and Cardinals was their second time meeting this season, with the Colts winning the first game in the rain, and this game just somehow managed to outdo their previous meeting in terms of "Did I just see that right? I did" quality. This game was wild from the start and it felt like a certainty that the Cardinals would win it right up until they didn't.
In the bottom of the first inning, the Cardinals got a runner on who managed to score on a sac fly and that was the first run. In the bottom of the second inning the Cardinals would do their most damage as a run scored with bases loaded. After a double, two more runs would score and finally a sac fly to deep center would score the fourth and final run of the inning for the Cardinals, putting them at a 5-0 lead which seemed like the Colts might not be able to come back from. I've seen teams come back from being down ten runs and win the game in the last inning, but the pitching of Alex Koletar was on tonight.
The Colts would shift their fate as a bases loaded walk brought in their first run in the top of the third inning. A single for the Colts scores two more runs and the Colts managed to plate three runs to cut the Cardinals lead to 5-3. It slowly began to feel like victory was within reach for the Colts. The Cardinals would score one more run on a wild pitch in the bottom of the third and now they were up 6-3, scoring twice as many runs as the Colts.
Top of the fourth inning and everything went wild. Kyle Darby singles with bases loaded and a run scores. Another run was walked in to make it 6-5. With a huge double, two runs score but the umpire makes a late call and says that the second runner for the Colts was actually out at homeplate. This was a chance where the game could've been 7-6 in favor of the Colts, but instead this inning ended tied at 6-6.
The thing about the play at home was that I thought the throw would get relayed because it didn't seem as if the Cardinals even had a play to get him out at the plate. This is why everyone was shocked and upset at the same time when the call was made on the field- late- that the runner was out and the go ahead run did not score. It felt somewhat awkward to take away that lead from the Colts, but the team stayed in it and battled.
The bottom of the fourth is a whole other story. When John Petonito of the Cardinals was running to first he was called out by the umpire. This upset the majority of the Cardinals players, especially their coach and I didn't hear it but apparently John Petonito said some things that you just don't say in baseball and the umpires tossed him out. This was when the game took its true decent into madness.
Without this player, the Cardinals were seemingly down to only eight players and the umpires seemed to believe that meant they would forfeit and the Colts would win, even though the Cardinals had bases loaded and it was tied 6-6. This was such a great game at this point, as the Colts slowly came back and managed to tie the game, it felt like we needed a resolution and having the game end because the Cardinals were short one player felt like a bad way for it to end. The problem at this point though was that the Cardinals were still mad- and arguing- over John Petonito being thrown out.
Eventually, the Cardinals revealed they had a player there- someone on their roster- who was just there watching the game and so as the umpires left saying the game was over they were eventually talked into coming back and the game resumed. This was such a nail-biting type of game when the Cardinals were up by three or more runs and the Colts were coming back, but then it just turned into something else completely with that blown call at home and then the Cardinals player being tossed.
Two strikeouts by Dan Livingston ended the fourth inning and the fifth and the sixth went by without much happening. At this point, as we headed into the seventh, it felt as if the game could go another three hours because it was still tied. The top of the seventh proved otherwise though as the Colts had an infield single and a wild pitch to score runs at two different times. This put the Colts up 8-6 and that was where they would stay.
Behind the pitching of Jonathan Martin, this game ended on a doubleplay and the Colts managed to come back from being down 5-0 to win the game by two runs. Not only that, both teams went through two different umpire calls that just seemed to affect the game in some way. When the umpires walked off the field it kind of threw off the rhythm of the game and it felt like it might change the game somehow but the game just went on as if it had never stopped. Anyone who ever thinks that baseball is boring just isn't watching the right games.
On Friday night the yet-to-win-a-game Bristol Greeners come to Johnny Taylor Field to take on the Colts, while next Wednesday the Colts have their rematch with People's as well. The Cardinals will have to wait until next week to play again when they will meet the Phillies on Tuesday and Expos on Wednesday at Pat Wall Field, both games which should be interesting tests for them.