Saturday, October 8, 2011

NLDS Wrap Up - Cards/Brewers Advance

Last night we had 2 Game 5s and both were decided by just one run. The Diamondbacks rallied against Brewers closer John Axford to tie their game in the 9th only to have Nyjer Morgan, the self-proclaimed Tony Plush, Tony Gumbo and/or Tony Tumbstone (you can't make this stuff up), deliver a walk-off single in the Bottom of the 10th. In the nightcap, Roy Halladay gave up just one run, but he was outpitched by his friend and former teammate Chris Carpenter as the Cardinals pulled off the upset winning the game 1-0 and the series 3-2. Here's my Game 5 Game Balls:

BREWERS 3 DIAMONDBACKS 2 (10 innings) - Milwaukee wins series 3-2

3) John Axford - Axford allowed the first three hitters he faced to reach base and blew the Brewers 2-1 lead, but faced with runners on first and second and nobody out in a tie game, he showed why he's one of the most dominant relievers in the game. Axford struck out Aaron Hill and induced ground balls off the bats of Justin Upton and Henry Blanco in the 9th, and threw a 1-2-3 10th giving the Brewers a chance to win the game in extra innings.
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2) Carlos Gomez - 2011 was a disappointing year for Gomez, and he didn't even receive an at-bat in this series until Game 4. Coming on as a defensive substitution for Corey Hart in the 8th, it was Gomez who sparked the Brewers 10th inning rally singling off of J.J. Putz and stealing second to set the stage for Morgan's walk-off.
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1) Nyjer Morgan - Trailing 1-0 in the 4th, Morgan made a heady baserunning play tagging up and scoring on a flyball to second baseman Aaron Hill to tie the game. But Morgan claims the top spot for his performance in the 10th inning. Morgan's single up the middle off of J.J. Putz scored the speedy Gomez from 2nd base handing the Brewers their first playoff series win since 1982 back when they were still in the American League.
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CARDINALS 1 PHILLIES 0 - St. Louis wins series 3-2

3) Rafael Furcal - Furcal led off the game with a triple off Roy Halladay and scored the game's only run in the first inning. He also made a nifty diving play up the middle to rob Carlos Ruiz of a hit in the 8th. The 33 year old Furcal hit just .227 in the Divisional Series, but his triple in Game 5 was one of the series' biggest hits.
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2) Skip Schumaker -  Schumaker doubled on the 10th pitch of his first inning at bat against Halladay driving home Furcal for the only run of the game. The 31 year old Schumaker, who started in centerfield, hit .600 in the series.
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1) Chris Carpenter - Carpenter was chased after just 3 innings when he pitched on short rest in Game 2. Game 5 was a totally different story as Carpenter shut down the Phillies limiting them to just 3 hits and 0 runs as he pitched a complete game shutout, the first of his postseason career. Carpenter is 6-2 with a 2.94 ERA in 11 career postseason starts.
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