Given the vagaries of both the MLB schedule (a ridiculously-long rain delay making for a late night before an afternoon series wrap) and my own personal activities, I’m writing the recap of Saturday’s game after Sunday’s is already well in the books. Such is the life of the Progressive Game Blog, as it cares not for time and the only logical progression is from post to post. We’re focused on Saturday’s game, darn the consequences.
Unfortunately, it’d be more fun to talk about Carlos Martinez‘s outing (and we will in the morning) than the results of Saturday’s water-logged outing. Michael Wacha hit the 100 pitch wall (so wonderfully illustrated by Pip in his post about the sixth) and took his first loss of the season. We knew that odds were he’d not go undefeated all season long, though the way he’s pitched at times it didn’t seem out of the realm of possibilities.
One of the things we’ve talked about often with Wacha this season is the downturn in strikeouts. So, of course, the time when the strikeout count creeps up (he had seven on the night, which tied for his season high) the rest of the game doesn’t work out for him. I appreciate Mike Matheny trying to stick with him and get him through the sixth, but it was pretty obvious even to me (watching via GameDay app as FOX left me with the Rangers/Red Sox as well and I had no luck with the FOX Sports Go app) that the ‘pen needed to be tapped a bit earlier than it was.
Given the whole situation, I hate to give Wacha the Goat, so I think I’m going to look at Jhonny Peralta for that one in this game. Peralta grounded into two double plays, including one right after the Dodgers had taken the lead. When you can wipe out some momentum that is brewing, you fit into the Goat category. It’s true Peralta drove in the only run, but he did that with a groundout also, so all in all it wasn’t his best outing.
For the Hero, I’ll go with Matt Carpenter, though credit also should be given to Jason Heyward, who came in after Matt Holliday extended his on-base streak to 44 and then went back to the clubhouse to deal with the flu and got two hits in two at-bats. I continue to hope that Heyward will get on track and that had to help. Carpenter also got two hits, though, and one of them helped in run creation, so he’ll get the nod by the slimmest of margins.
All in all, it wasn’t the game we were hoping for when we planned the annual Progressive Game Blog, but we still had a lot of fun writing it up for you. If you’ve not read all of the innings, use that link to find them and see Saturday’s game through some unique points-of-view. You’ll be glad you did!