Cardinals 5, Astros 4

Ka-boom. Trailing 4-2 in the 9th with two out and facing Mr. Automatic, Brad Lidge, St. Louis’ David Eckstein singled to left, Jim Edmonds walked…and Albert Pujols crushed a hanging slider all the way to those cheesy train tracks high above left field.

Pujols’ blast may have saved St. Louis’ season, and Eckstein’s dribbler between third and short might have started the rally, but let’s give credit where it is due. Well done, Jim Edmonds, for not getting thrown out of the game.

Insane, spin-around tag by Javier Molina when Jason Lane tried to score from third on Andy Pettitte’s grounder to Pujols in the 2nd. Best defensive play we’ve seen from one of the 3 Molinas in the last week, easy.

The Astros’ record when leading after 7 innings has now dropped to something like 78-2. Which either means the opposition was due, or more likely, Pujols is one of those guys who will absolutely kill you if you make a mistake.

Though I’m not sure I’ll agree with Jennie Zelasko that momentum in the series has swung to St. Louis’ side (merely because I wouldn’t want to agree with her if she said the sky was blue), there’s enough intrigue to keep us glued for a few more days. The Cardinals merely need two consecutive home victories to advance ; the Astros, a split from a pair of games started by Clemens and Oswalt. Momentum? For tonight, St. Louis can settle for survival.

Do we know for sure yet that Berkman’s 3 run homer off Chris Carpenter in the 7th wasn’t caught by the same guy who snagged Berkman & Burke’s long balls in that 18 inning game a week ago Sunday? Is it my imagination, or does it seem like every Astros home run is a 330 foot pop fly, short porch special?

As always, Lady CSTB has the last word. When a glazed over Tony La Russa remarked during his post-game press conference that “these guys are only human”, my (much) better half replied “that’s funny, I thought they were human-shaped statues made of frozen Jesus sperm.”

Then again, I’m sure Joe Buck would’ve said the same thing if he’d watched the game over here.