World Series In The Cards
MILWAUKEE - Who would throw out the ceremonial first pitch for the Milwaukee Brewers before Game 6?
Green Bay Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers?
Hall of Famers and Brewers legends such as Robin Yount or Paul Molitor?
Nope, it was Alex Sanchez, the umpire’s room attendant at Miller Park, dressed as Sully from the movie Monsters Inc. ... to get the Brewers worked into a “Beast Mode” frenzy Sunday night.
Then Shaun Marcum took the ball and pitched like Aloysius Snuffleupagus of Sesame Street, allowing four runs in a 27-pitch first inning as the St. Louis Cardinals scored early in bunches to beat Milwaukee 12-6 in a downright beastly ugly Game 6 of the National League Championship Series before 43,926 fans at Miller Park.
After winning the series in six games, the Cardinals will play host to Game 1 of the World Series on Wednesday against the Texas Rangers.
“Shaun had a different game plan going in, but he was never able to get into it,” said Brewers manager Ron Roenicke. “I know it was the right decision to start him. They outplayed us.
“I wouldn’t call this a bad game for us?”
His starter went one inning, the Cardinals scored in four of the first five innings.
John Jay singled with one out and stole second, after a walked and Lance Berkman, 1-for-17 against Marcum, singled in a run and David Freese went deep, a three-run homer off Marcum to put the Cardinals up 4-0.
That gave Freese, a St. Louis native, 14 RBIs this post-season, tied with Pujols for the club record. Pujols had 14 in 2004 in 15 games, while this was Freese’s 11th game and he earned the NLCS MVP award.
“You can’t get away with mistakes, we made too many,” Roenicke said. “You need to play well, you need breaks. We didn’t pitch well and we couldn’t touch their bullpen.”
Marcum’s post-season ERA is 14.89 after allowing 16 runs in 92/3 innings. Previously the highest post-season ERA by a starter was Philadelphia Phillies’ Tommy Greene at 13.11. He made two starts against the Atlanta Braves in the 1993 NLCS, then allowed seven runs in 21/3 innings as the Blue Jays rallied to win Game 4 of the World Series.
Suggestions to start lefty Chris Narveson over Marcum were forgotten about after the lefty allowed more runs than the starter, touched for a four-run third after Milwaukee had cut the deficit to 5-4. He allowed solo homers to Rafael Furcal and Albert Pujols.
The Cardinals output in the first three innings: 4-1-4 was same as the Milwaukee area code. Not good if you are phoning along at home from Wisconsin.
St. Louis starter Edwin Jackson wasn’t better as the Brewers scored four runs against him. He was lifted for a pinch hitter in the third. A two-run single by Allen Craig was the result, as Tony La Russa pushes all the proper buttons.
Ex-Jay Marc Rzepczynski pitched 21/3 innings, picking up the win. He gave Cardinals fans a scare covering first on a Ryan Braun dribbler, landing on Pujols, who gloved the ball and dove to tag Braun.
Octavio Dotel took over in the seventh striking out Braun for the ninth time in 11 at-bats.
In a series dominated and won by the Cardinals bullpen, Rzepczynski and Dotel combined to work 81/3 innings allowing three hits and two earned runs, striking out nine. The former took care of Fielder, the latter Braun.
“I’m just happy to have played here,” said Fielder a free agent, given a large ovation after grounding out in the eighth. “It’s time to play with the kids now. I had a couple of clear my throat moments taking the jersey off a final time. I played with these guys since I was 18.”
The Cards and Brewers combined to go 12-for-26 (.462) with a double, five homers, two walks and a scoring fly ball.
The Brewers defence made three in a span of three hitters: Corey Hart over-running a single in right and third baseman Jerry Hairston booting a ball and then gloving the ball into right on an attempted force on the same play.
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