|NYM||Gary Matthews Jr||-0.307||-0.307||0.000||0.000||0.000|
Expected ERAs for today's pitching performances:
Johan Santana: 1.94
Fernando Nieve: 0.00
Hisanori Takahashi: 0.00
Jenrry Mejia: 3.45
Raul Valdes: 8.49
Francisco Rodriguez: 13.59
Mike Pelfrey: 4.10
Ryota Igarashi: 2.60
Pedro Feliciano: 2.51
Jaime Garcia: 2.64
Trever Miller: 8.36
Jason Motte: 1.03
Dennys Reyes: 1.72
Blake Hawksworth: 3.51
Ryan Franklin: 1.08
Kyle McClellan: 1.18
Mitchell Boggs: 3.35
Felipe Lopez: 2.69
Joe Mather: 9.77
NYM Player of the Game: CF Angel Pagan (2.459 NRuns: 1.009 hitting, 1.659 fielding, -0.209 running)
STL Player of the Game: 1B Albert Pujols (2.122 NRuns: 0.807 hitting, 1.315 fielding)
NYM Goat: RP Raul Valdes (-1.996 NRuns: -0.511 hitting, -1.062 pitching, -0.423 running)
STL Goat: OF Ryan Ludwick (-1.197 NRuns: -0.951 hitting, 0.870 fielding, -1.116 running)
The Net Runs surprise from a game this long is that no player cost his team more than a run and change, while no player contributed more than 2 runs and change. This was also a rare game in that Busch Stadium itself had no impact on the run expectancy: No ball went over the fence, and only Albert Pujols' 19th inning double came close to the wall. Every bit of run expectancy was impacted between the lines and in full control of the participating teams.
... except when the managers meddled. Mets manager Jerry Manuel and Cards manager Tony LaRussa combined to leak away 1.767 runs through sacrifice bunts and intentional walks. Granted, in the end game some of the intentional walks were somewhat smart, done so to get to one of the many relief pitchers who were forced to bat with two outs for an easy out. But many of the sacrifices and free passes came with no or one out, and while things could have gone badly for either manager as a result, they did not until the 19th and 20th innings.
Oddly enough, Jerry Manuel held K-Rod until his team finally took the lead in the top 19th, only to watch K-Rod pitch atrociously and blow the save in the bottom 19th before escaping. The key to victory for the Mets, however, was the Cardinals bullpen running out of gas, and Tony LaRussa being forced to enlist position players Felipe Lopez and Joe Mather to pitch (which matched just fine with pitcher Kyle Lohse being forced into duty in left field... Lohse BTW actually did a decent job fielding in left).
Felipe Lopez actually pitched fairly well, but only threw a single inning, and Mather, left out there for two frames, pitched much, much more like a player who never pitches. Two free passes, a line drive and two sac flies later, the Mets had a lead they would not relinquish, and it was coincidentally another out of place player, #2 starter Mike Pelfrey, who came on and pitched a decent 20th for an oddball save he likely will never forget.