If you were going to create a perfect Saturday afternoon for baseball, chances are good it would look a lot like St. Louis did yesterday afternoon — bright blue skies, sunshine, temperature of 83 degrees at 3 p.m. on July 19.
Of course you’d want a really compelling match-up to go with your perfect afternoon, like two teams battling for the top spot in their respective divisions.
All those elements came together yesterday, with the 54-44 tied-for-first-in-the-NL-West Dodgers and the 53-44 one-game-behind-the-Brewers-in-the-NL-Central Cardinals doing battle. Since it’s a Saturday home game, the Cardinals are wearing their alternate uniforms (which just add to the perfect day ambiance even more).
Plus, to make it even better for people like me who will take any available television option besides Dan McLaughlin on FOX Sports Midwest, the game is being broadcast on FOX Sports 1 with Kenny Albert and Eric Karros announcing — in addition to FOX Midwest with McLaughlin and Tim McCarver.
Oh, and this game just happens to be the United Cardinal Bloggers annual progressive game blog — and I’m leading off the coverage with the first inning.
O happy day! Hopefully, that is …
Yes, the Dodgers and Cardinals are back at it again after Friday night’s 3-2 Cards win in which Matt Holliday drove in all three runs with a double and home run, Kolten Wong scored the two runs Holliday didn’t, Lance Lynn allowed two runs and struck out nine, and the bullpen — Seth Maness, Pat Neshek and Trevor Rosenthal — threw three scoreless innings and allowed just one hit.
In addition to the bright blue sky and sun, the green of the field looks extra vibrant on the FOX 1 telecast — much more than on FOX Midwest, as I had to change the channel and check once I noticed. Hmmmm, guess FOX 1 has some super-duper extra-green camera.
The starting pitchers, Zack Greinke and Joe Kelly, have faced each other before — last October, to be exact, in Games One and Five of the NLCS. Game Five was the last time Kelly faced the Dodgers, while Greinke started against the Cards three weeks ago today in Los Angeles. Here’s to a better performance from Kelly, as he gave up four earned runs that last game and was the losing pitcher, and a worse one from Greinke, who gave up one run, four hits and struck out 10. Continue reading