I want a holiday in the sun, and this fine Sunday is a De Facto Saturday. I want to see some history, in the form of a franchise-record 11th consecutive series victory. These are Sex Pistols references. The St. Louis Cardinals are playing the Cincinnati Reds at Busch Stadium and I am going to let you know what happened.

Well, for now, I’m going to let the teams’ Twitter accounts let you know what happened in terms of initial personnel.

Here’s the things that happened.

  • Recently, Luke Weaver’s control has been a little bit shaky, to say the least, and the top of the first didn’t do much to assuage fears about his current capacity to pitch in the starting rotation. A leadoff double by Billy Hamilton, a pronounced three-tool player who is inexplicably a competent hitter against the Cardinals, created immediate danger. A Jose Peraza ground out advanced Hamilton, and a Joey Votto walk (in Weaver’s defense, that kinda thing happens a lot) put runners on the corners.
  • A Scooter Gennett squib hit brought Hamilton home, while a wild pitch got Votto to cross the plate as well. 2-0 Reds with Scooter Gennett standing on second base. The next two batters walked and suddenly, the bases are loaded with just one out. Mason Williams (not the “Classical Gas” one) came to the plate and grounded into a double play, however, mercifully ending the half-inning at 2-0.
  • To lead off the bottom half of the first, Matt Carpenter walked and Yadier Molina singled, but that was the extent of the Cardinals’ bid to score some runs of their own. Jose Martinez struck out, and while a Marcell Ozuna ground out advanced the runners to second and third, Paul DeJong wasn’t able to capitalize.
  • The top of the second was similarly dicey to the first. Curt Casali led off with a double, one which nearly led to an out thanks to an incredible Harrison Bader throw (Greg Garcia was late to the bag, seemingly expecting to have to back up a potential errant throw, but even so may have still applied the tag, but the Cardinals did not challenge the call), and while pitcher Anthony DeSclafani couldn’t drive Casali home, advancing him to third was a desirable outcome for the Reds. Next, Weaver walked Billy Hamilton and then issued a two-out walk to Joey Votto, and this seems to be a trend. Mercifully, Scooter Gennett had a deep fly out to left field to end the inning with Luke Weaver once again stranding the bases loaded.
  • A two-out Greg Garcia single meant that Luke Weaver came to the plate, and despite Weaver’s lack of control in the first two innings (and unusually high pitch count), there was no pinch hitter. Weaver grounded out.
  • Weaver did look better in the third inning, though it would be difficult to not look better. He did hit Scott Schebler with a pitch, but otherwise struck out two and recorded a third out via grounder to Patrick Wisdom, who made a nifty little play at third base.
  • The Cardinals offense keeps being boring. 1-2-3 in the bottom of the third.
  • After a 1-2-3 top of the fourth which included two Luke Weaver strikeouts (!!!), the Cardinals finally got something going offensively in the bottom of the fourth. Marcell Ozuna was hit by a pitch, and Paul DeJong singled to put runners on first and second with nobody out.
  • Patrick Wisdom made a quiet out, but Harrison Bader continued his quest for Rookie of the Year respect by doubling to score Ozuna and advance DeJong to third base. A Greg Garcia squeeze attempt turned into an outfield infield single, tying the game at 2-2. Tyler O’Neill struck out pinch-hitting for Luke Weaver, and the Reds deferred to a lefty to face Matt Carpenter.
  • Carpenter was unable to add to his MVP case, taking a long but ultimately fruitless at-bat which ended in a ground out to Joey Votto. 2-2 through four innings and it is firmly a bullpen game on both sides.
  • Tyler Webb pitched effectively in the top of the fifth, allowing a single to Scooter Gennett but recording three outs on the other three batters.
  • Not much worth mentioning in the bottom of the inning either. Jose Martinez keeps striking out. I’m not a fan of that.
  • Webb looked good in the sixth. And so did Dominic Leone. The Cardinals should consider scoring more runs in the bottom of the sixth.
  • (They did not)
  • With Carlos Martinez pitching the top of the seventh, Billy Hamilton got a leadoff double. Seriously, he’s an invincible player against the Cardinals.
  • Jose Peraza grounded out to advance Hamilton to third base, and a deep Joey Votto fly out to center field easily scored Hamilton. Billy Hamilton is among the fastest players in the sport, but I could’ve scored from third on that one. 3-2 Reds.
  • Greg Garcia battled back from a 0-2 hole to draw a leadoff walk. Hey, he draws walks! Still love ya, Greg! And Matt Adams, pinch-hitting for Carlos Martinez, is coming out to the plate with the Reds going to the bullpen, with Jared Hughes emerging.
  • Matt Adams smoked one, and that’s the good news. The bad news is he hit it straight at Joey Votto, leaving Greg Garcia with no chance to get back to first. Aaaaand a double play. A Matt Carpenter out ended the inning and this slow crawl of a game is feeling more and more tedious.
  • With the non-Carpenter heart of the order approaching, the bottom of the eighth feels like a good time to get a run, or ideally more than a run. And a leadoff walk to Yadier Molina is a good start! Maybe Jose Martinez can make contact, ideally not in the grounding into a double play way.
  • Base hit Jose Martinez! Garcia only made it to second base, but runners on first and second with nobody out, while familiar today, is a generally good situation.
  • A soft grounder off the bat of Marcell Ozuna, which isn’t ideal but also meant it was too soft to mean a double play. Runners on second and third with Paul DeJong coming to the plate. Well, briefly. Intentional walk for Paul DeJong with Patrick Wisdom coming to the plate with the bases juiced and one out.
  • And with a deep-ish fly ball enough to tie the game, the ball got as far as first base. Joey Votto grabbed the lazy pop fly and now it is time to depend upon Harrison Bader to be the hero. I mean, he’s done it before. According to the Busch Stadium graphics/music departments, he’s literally Superman.
  • Faster than a speeding bullet, Harrison Bader put a weakly hit ball in play, which means for most players an out and for him an infield single. He tied the game, and when the next batter, Greg Garcia, hit a weak grounder to the second baseman, Bader tried to at least force the go-ahead run home by running through second base rather than sliding. He didn’t beat the throw but I appreciate his spirit.
  • Francisco Pena is in to catch (Molina was pinch-run for by Jose Adolis Garcia) and not Carson Kelly. Hm.
  • Dakota Hudson came back out of the ninth inning and he shut down the Reds lineup. Look, the game’s already gone three hours and I’d like to see one (1) walk-off victory, please.
  • Yairo Munoz is pinch-hitting, and Francisco Pena is due up third in the inning, so I guess Matt Carpenter should hit a walk-off home run.
  • Or maybe something slightly less heroic would work too because Yairo Munoz led off the inning with a double! Woohoo! Thank you for reading this impartial and objective account of the game.
  • Oh, yeah, the intentional walk, that’s an option for the Reds. Once again, first and second with nobody out, and maybe Francisco Pena can bunt? Is he a good bunter? I don’t know.
  • Francisco Pena is not a great hitter. I’ll admit this. But my goodness did he execute the greatest bunt I have ever seen. Getting runners to second and third would be great, but executing a bunt that hugs the first base line so tightly that the Reds just stood around hoping it would go foul and it just…not going foul…beautiful. And now it’s time for Jose Martinez with the bases loaded and nobody out and let’s just see how they win this game. Maybe a grand slam to get us cheap drinks? Okay, I won’t be greedy.
  • Jose Martinez swung at ball one to get to an 0-2 count and Marcell Ozuna is on deck and I’m getting to feel like I was a bit presumptuous about the whole “let’s just see how they will win” rather than “if they will win”. I take the blame if they squander this opportunity. Anyway, Martinez kept on swinging and eventually struck out.
  • Marcell Ozuna grounded to second and while it would’ve almost certainly been an inning-ending double play, the Reds instead opted to throw home. They got the out, but if Paul DeJong does something here, they may regret this.
  • While Paul DeJong’s at-bat wasn’t quite as bad as Martinez’s, it was itself quite poor. He got to 0-2 and then flied out, and while there was some confusion in the outfield, the Reds escaped the jam and sent the game to extras.
  • Bud Norris is correctly pitching. Remember when it took Mike Matheny like three years to figure this out? Ah, memories.
  • Joey Votto is an elite walker but only against the Cardinals does he walk in literally every plate appearance. And that’s how the top of the 10th started.
  • And Eugenio Suarez hits a two-run home run to make it 5-3. No, I’m not mad. This is actually very funny to me.
  • Wait, Dixon hit a home run? Who is Dixon? What is Dixon? You’re really gonna make me Google “Dixon Reds” to find out what this stupid jerk’s first name is. Brandon. It’s Brandon. 6-3 Reds.
  • A Patrick Wisdom walk. So there’s that.
  • Harrison Bader hit one pretty hard, but it was ultimately warning track power to cause the first out. Wisdom advanced to second base, which lessens the chances of a double play.
  • Wisdom found his way to third base and a slow grounder from Greg Garcia (it’s kind of his signature move) scored Wisdom, but it was ultimately a negative play, as it turned 6-4 but with nobody on and two outs and Carson Kelly coming up to pinch-hit for the pitcher’s spot.
  • Kelly draws a walk, and lookie here, Matt Carpenter is coming to the plate with a chance to tie the game. Something something salsa. Honestly I might walk Carpenter to get to Francisco Pena, which would totally crazy if not for the players involved.
  • They did it! They actually did it! Hopefully Francisco Pena is furious about this. He probably can’t bunt again.
  • First swing and Francisco Pena seems to really want to prove the Reds foolish. It went foul but he swung like he wanted a walk-off dinger.
  • Pena made decent contact, but to the right fielder. 6-4 Reds is the final and the Cardinals lose their first series in over a month.

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