The Cardinals Are Annoyingly Lucky

2013-10-26 safe

Game 3 of the 2013 World Series.  Tie game with runners on second and third, one out.  St. Louis, in the bottom of the 9th, is hoping for a win. Jon Jay is at the plate and here’s Uehara on the hill. 

Jay cracks it up the middle to Pedroia, who’s playing in. Pedroia fires home to nab Molina at the plate. He’s out! Two outs.

Oh, but wait! Saltalamacchia fires down the line to Middlebrooks at third to gun down Craig who is trying to advance to third.  The throw… IS OFF-TARGET and gets past the outstretched glove of Will Middlebrooks! But left fielder Daniel Nava is backing up the throw.  Craig stumbles over Middlebrooks and runs towards the plate as fast as he can on his injured foot. Nava fires it home, in plenty of time, and Salty puts the tag on Craig.  The home plate umpire Dana DeMuth raises his arms and wipes them from side to side signaling Craig is safe. 

SAFE?!?! 

Third base umpire Jim Joyce called “Interference” on Middlebrooks after he dove for the offline throw, and Craig was automatically awarded home when he tripped over Middlebrooks’ body!

The Cardinals win Game 3 of the World Series by a score of 5-4 in a walk-off interference call on what should’ve been a game-saving 4-2-5-7-2 double play.

That was a crazy play!  Two plays at the plate and two runners clearly out by a mile, but the St. Louis Cardinals walk off the field in a victory.

Is anyone really surprised by this?  Is anyone really surprised that the St. Louis Cardinals somehow won the game on this bizarre kind of play?  This happens all the time to the Cardinals!  They win games based on the craziest flukes.

For example:

THE RALLY SQUIRREL

In the 2011 NLDS, Skip Schumaker had a 1-1 count against Roy Oswalt when a squirrel ran across the plate. The squirrel showed good luck to the Cards, as they won the World Series.

DAVID FREESE HOMER IN GAME 6 OF THE 2011 WS, 2 OUTS, 2 STRIKES

The Cardinals were tied with the Rangers 9-9, and out of nowhere Third Baseman David Freese hit a homer that cleared 400 feet in center. It went to a game 7, and the Cardinals won that game too thanks to Freese.

GAME 5 OF THE 2012 NLDS

I can’t… really!

THE INFIELD FLY RULE

The baseball gods struck again on a well-into-the-outfield popup, that Left Field umpire Sam Hollbrook called an out on supposedly the “outfield fly rule.”

THE OBSTRUCTION CALL

The Cardinals struck again against the Red Sox when Will Middlebrooks was called for obstruction.

I’m not saying that it was a good call or a bad call, and I’m not saying the Cardinals stink.  The umpires used their best judgment to try to get it right.  And the Cardinals are a good team.  They won their Division this year against really competitive teams, the Pirates and the Reds.  They beat the Dodgers in the NLCS.  They’re playing tough against the Red Sox in this World Series.  They have good talent on their team.

It’s just that they are always so stinking lucky.

It must be great to be a Cardinals fan.  Somehow– somehow!– your team wins on incredible, unbelievable, this-just-doesn’t-happen kind of fluke plays.  It happens over and over again.  Which is why it is probably fun to be a Cardinals fan.

But if you’re not a Cardinals fan (and I’m not), then these unbelievable wins are just devastatingly frustrating.  It’s annoying to see this team always win based on crazy good luck.

It looks like this October, a few days before Halloween, the Cardinals have made another deal with the devil.

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