As I said in the Real Dirty Mets Dugout yesterday, last night’s game was one of my favorites of all time. I completely lost it when Felipe Lopez was brought into pitch with Kyle Lohse playing left field. It was clear to me that LaRussa would concede the game to protect his pitching staff, because he knows there are plenty more games the Cards can win to make it to the playoffs. On the other hand, Manuel was clearly fighting for his life, and there was no way he’d let a position player pitch…at least until the 21st inning.
If their roles were reversed, of course the Mets fan base would be going NUTS about Manuel letting Cora pitch an inning followed by Tatis for two. But you can’t really just reverse their roles, because their roles defined why each manager made his in-game decisions.
So in the end, the important part is that the Mets got the win and can actually win the series if John Maine out-pitches Wainwright tonight. Of course, the offense also has to figure out how to get a hit with a RISP, as they failed to do in all 20 innings yesterday.