Nootbaar walks off Cubs to complete Cards’ comeback
ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV) - The Cardinals were in a dry spell offensively through the first six innings of Thursday afternoon’s game against the Cubs at Busch Stadium, with two Brendan Donovan singles representing the lone base runners for the home team to that point.
With St. Louis trailing 3-0 in the bottom of the seventh, things changed in a dramatic way.
Nolan Gorman and Paul Goldschmidt launched back-to-back homers before Nolan Arenado doubled and came around to score on consecutive sacrifice flies to tie the game in a hurry against Chicago starter Marcus Stroman. In a blink, Busch was buzzing as the Cardinals looked to capture their third-straight win in conjunction with another Milwaukee meltdown in Pittsburgh.
Just a short while after an extra-innings wild pitch assured another loss for the division-leading Brewers, Lars Nootbaar delivered a 10th-inning base hit for the Cardinals, scoring Arenado to walk off the Cubs in the first game of a Thursday double-header.
Miles Mikolas started the game for the Cardinals and pitched into the seventh despite a trying afternoon filled with numerous frustrations with the home plate umpire. He allowed three earned runs across 6.1 innings to record his 15th quality start of the season.
After a sluggish start to the day for the Cardinals bats against Stroman, Nolan Gorman got things going for St. Louis in that seventh-inning rally with a drive to deep left. The swing was yet another powerful opposite field stroke for Gorman—which has become something of a trend for the rookie second baseman recently. The blast was Gorman’s 12th of the season as he raised his OPS to .769 upon the conclusion of Thursday’s day game.
Goldschmidt’s homer, his 26th of the year, came on a full-count pitch from Stroman just one batter later. It also inspired Cubs starter Marcus Stroman to offer a bemused smile in the general direction of where Goldy’s towering fly ball found the seats.
Goldschmidt ranks fourth among NL hitters in home runs while boasting the National League’s best OPS (1.026) as he continues on a legitimate NL MVP trajectory.
Thursday’s walk-off was the latest notable event in a run of positive results for the Cardinals, as St. Louis has won three straight games coinciding with a period where the Brewers have dropped four games in a row—including their last two by walk-off.
The Cardinals would draw even with the Brewers for first place in the NL Central standings with a win on Thursday night. Former Cub Jose Quintana will start game two of the doubleheader for St. Louis in his Cardinals debut after being acquired from Pittsburgh ahead of this week’s trade deadline.
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