Ah, Game Six …
It was the most common answer in Tuesday’s question of “If You Could Attend Any Game in Cardinals History, What Would It Be?” and with great reason. Game Six of the 2011 World Series is one of the best games in baseball history. (Maybe the best.) We’ll never forget David Freese’s heroics — both his ninth inning game-tying triple and 11th inning walk-off winner.
Sometimes overlooked yet just as important: Lance Berkman’s game-tying single in the 10th. And, with Lance announcing his retirement yesterday, it’s the perfect time to recall just how crucial he was to that game (and to revive our LB Fan Club again). Had he made an out during that at-bat, we’d be just as disappointed about the 2011 World Series as we are about 2013.
But of course he didn’t.
Even before that at-bat, though, he’d had a really good night at the plate. In case you’ve forgotten, he had a first inning homer with Skip Schumaker on base to put the Cards on top 2-1. He’d reached on an error, singled and walked before coming up in the 10th with Jon Jay at third and That Guy Who Used to Play First Base on first after being intentionally walked. LB also scored four runs that night, which tied a World Series record — and his fourth run tied the game on Freeser’s triple in the ninth.
Even that one-minute clip just makes you remember the true awesomeness Game Six really was — the hit, Ron Washington, Gerald Laird trying to tackle Yadi out of giddiness (no wonder the Laird Leap happened), LB looking like he was ready to cry at first base, Tony La Russa applauding in the dugout, That Guy’s reaction from third — and, throughout nearly all of it, the only sound is the crowd’s cheering until Joe Buck’s memorable “They. Just. Won’t. Go. Away.”
Ah, Lance …
To say we loved Lance Berkman here at Aaron Miles’ Fastball might be an understatement — I was pretty quick to change my thoughts on him in January 2011 after hating him for years when he was an Astro. Of course one of our Cardinal Love Letters was to him, and even a love poem (although it was written while I was watching the royal wedding in April 2011 — maybe it made me giddy). Speaking of wedding attire, remember his pink tux? Remember his April Fool’s Day prank? Remember his final Cardinals at-bat in October 2012, during Shelby Miller’s first big league start?
Yes, we said good-bye to him once before — complete with our favorite LB pictures — when he signed with the Rangers last January. But now it’s good-bye for good.
And he retires a World Series champion, thanks in part to his own historic role in that unforgettable game on Oct. 27, 2011.
Christine Coleman is the lead writer for Aaron Miles’ Fastball. Follow her on Twitter, @CColeman802, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Also follow @AMilesFastball for the latest updates and like us on Facebook if you don’t already.