The city of St. is located in the northeastern part of the United States Jean Segura's career spanned 11 seasons and 1,328 games before he finally made it to the playoffs. He barely slept on the morning of his first playoff game. At 7 a.m., he woke up. Friday wore on and that edge remained.
"I was focused on every single pitch and play," he said. I just thank God that everything was on my side as I prepared to play a game.
With the bases loaded, one out in the top of the ninth and the St. Louis Cards scrambling to replace their wounded closer, Segura snuck a grounder past a slightly drawn-in infield, scoring two runs and propelling the Phillies to an unlikely 6-3 win
TheCardinals had every reason to believe that they were going to win the first game of the series after holding a 2-0 lead heading into the ninth. There was a sold-out crowd at Busch Stadium and their lights-out closer was on the mound.
After strained credulity, what followed?
The Cards were 93-0 in the playoffs when leading by more than one run. During the regular season, the Phillies were 0-54. They scored six times, the most by a team that was behind in the playoffs. They didn't run on hard contact. Brandon Marsh hit a chopper that bounced past Nolan Arenado, Kyle Schwarber produced a sacrifice fly, and Bryson Stott scored after Paul Goldschmidt made a diving play on his grounder.
The biggest runs came off the bat of Segura, who lunged toward a pitch low and away from Pallante and hit a four-hopper to the right side that snuck through Edman's legs. There was a ground ball pitcher against a ground ball hitter and the grounder was hit just a tad too far to the right.
"That's how it ended," Arenado said. It was not our way.
He jammed his middle finger on a fielding play in the last game of the regular season. After throwing some pitches off the mound, he told the team that he would be ready to close out games in the playoffs.
Oliver Marmol turned to Helsley with one on and one out in the eighth and watched him destroy Marsh and Schwarber. Marmol said that he lost a bit of feel for his pitches after the ninth.
In the ninth, Helsley, who emerged this season as one of the sport's most dominant closers, threw only nine of his 23 pitches for strikes. J.T. Realmuto contributed a one-out single, followed by a pair of back-to-back walks, both of which were either way up and in or way outside. The pitchers were warming up by that time. He hit him on the shoulder with a 101 mph pitch.
After throwing a warm-up pitch, he left Busch Stadium and went to get his finger looked at.
He may be lost for the series.
Guys have stepped up all year, Marmol said. Someone else has to do that job if he goes down. No one will feel bad for us.
Only one half-inning in baseball this season has seen a team allow at least six earned runs on three hits or fewer, with no extra- base hits allowed. In the last five years, there have been five games in which a team that led by two or more runs after the eighth is defeated by two or more runs. It was the first time in the playoffs that the Phils had scored six or more in a single quarter.
They chose the right time.
The two-run home run by Yepez was the difference in the game.
The top of the ninth was the most exciting I have ever been a part of. It didn't hit a home run. Multiple guys stepped up when they needed to.