Just hardball

NunezAfter Abraham Nunez took it on the quad in that collision with Jason Lane in Game 3, it seems a lot of Cardinals fans were up in arms that Lane went after their guy. Dirty play, they said. Scott Rolen in 2002 all over again, they said. They called the radio stations. They e-mailed sportswriters.

It’s understandable looking through Cardinals-colored glasses, especially with Nunez out of the Game 4 lineup. But take a step back, people.

Says here that play was such a confluence of factors — short throw, big man going first to third, gutsy third baseman throwing himself in harm’s way. It was happening so fast, Lane couldn’t have gone after Nunez if he tried. It was a hardball play, simple as that.

It was an accident, and nobody in the Cardinals clubhouse was complaining afterward, or putting a bounty out on Lane or anything like that.

Hey, maybe if Jeff Suppan buzzes Lane in that first at-bat, all those Cardinals fans will be right and it really was perceived as dirty by the players. But nobody in the press box or either clubhouse Saturday really thought or said anything of it, honestly. And if Tony La Russa wasn’t fired up about it, that should tell you something.

It’s just another frustrating injury for the Cardinals. That’s it and that’s all. — John Schlegel/MLB.com

26 Comments

Wow. Just, wow. After watching game 2 in person, and 3 & 4 on TV, I’m left wondering one question. How much are are Phil Garner and the Astros paying this set of umpires to completely and totally f*** up every single close play in the series? Seriously, if this year’s NLCS (and that one play in the ALCS) doesn’t make the case for instant replay in baseball then nothing will.

ummm…to all, we cards fans in no way believe in this bellyaching about umps…the fact that we are playing heartless, ***** *** baseball is the reason we’re down 3-1…Exept, Pujols, Carp, and Mulder, I’ve never seen a bigger bunch of losers, and I’m not talking about the umps

we now have to beat Pettitte, Oswalt and Clemens to advance and with this gutless bunch, it aint happening..larussa and co. should be ashamed and it should cost Lapasta his job for utter lack of motivation and preparation.

Hey unspun, you can’t blame the umps. The Cards just like getting b*tch slapped by wildcard teams. LETS GO STROS!

The Cards offense was just shut down by killer pitching. With the offensive line-up they have, they should have had plenty of elbow room and a couple of bad calls would not have made a difference to the outcome of the game. Looks like the Stros and the W.Sox in WS05. LETS GO STROS!

How quickly you fans turn against your hometeam just continues to amaze me. When my “lowly xxxx-throws” were down 15-30, I was still rooting and knew we had a chance to come back. My faith never waivered. I never stopped attending the games. KILL THE CARDS!!!!!!!!!!! Go Astros!!!

Ditto Nitrohonda;
It got really hard to watch the Astros lose so frequently at the beginning of the season–so much so that my son asked how I could sit and watch them lose so much. I said “I will watch them like I always do-Win or lose. It just makes it that much sweeter when they win.” I have no use for fair-weather fans. It just shows that they are not there to watch the great game of baseball. They are there only for the gratification of winning. Its our turn now.

It is sad that umpires had so little confidence in the Astro’s ability to win this series that they had to resort to interferring wby several bad calls. I watched the game and was surprise by the number of bad calls. I listened to three different ESPN annoucers, during and after the game and all said that this was the worst case of umpiring they had ever seen. The sad this is that Astros had the ability and talent to beat the Cards on their own. Now because of the unpires we will never know is they are in the World series because they have the best team in the National League of it is because the umps wanted them their. The good part is that now, finally, maybe we can do some sort of challenge like in football to force the umps to be more honest. I hope the Astros make it I would just have like to see them make it on their own merit.

I love this guy. Send me an email obviously not liking my comments about the fair-weathered fans, specifically, Rickie-boy. Here’s what that fan had to say. It takes balls to do that, a cast-iron set as well.

Hey listen here buddy!! The cardinal fans are the most loyal fans in all of baseball a matter of fact we had the most fans in our stadium than any other national league team and that just shows you how much loyalty the fans have for the St. Louis Cardinals. All you stros fans do not know what you are talking about do not show any respect for the opposing team in this series. Just because of bad judgment calls by the umpires does not mean that we are a lowly team we are ranked number one in the National League Central Division for 2 years in a roll that is a big accomplishment!! We are not out of it by no means just look at the Boston Red Sox that came back from a 3-1 deficit to beat the New York Yankees in 2004!! We are die’hard fans and we know what winning is all about it is a team effort not just one person!! The stros are just seeking revenge because they do not have a potent offense that the Cardinals do and that is a disgrace!! Come on Cardinals!!

My response to his email….

I NEVER called the Cardinals a lowly team. If you read

the blogs, you’ll notice that Rick is the one who

called us the “lowly xxxx-throws.” That means the

***-throws. I enjoyed repeating his quote and rubbing

it in because we’re the ones with the 3-1 lead. Good

natured ribbing is what sports fans do to each other.

Mainly, he was the one who appeared to be the turncoat

and gave up on the Cardinals. This was a nitpick

directed towards him. No doubt, YOU are a loyal fan!

Go Astros!!!! FYI, the BoSox did NOT come back from a

3-1 defict. They came back from an even more stunning

3-0 defict.

–Mike

GO ASTROS!!!!!!! Kill the Cards! Put them away TONIGHT!!

Eagarly awaiting Rick’s response!!! Once he finds out he’s the center of a minor controversity that’s run amock in stranger’s emailboxes. KILL THE CARDS!!!!!

This is why you never say never. May the team who doesn’t celebrate too early win!!!! Go Cardinals.

(nitro obviously understands little about human emotion as well as even less about baseball)….the little wild card entrant just got “Poo-holed” by Sir Albert….the Cards have been playing lousy and the Stroh’s beer bunch couldnt put them away even with that joke of a park…now it’s on to Busch to repeat last years scene…

But we’ll think and laugh about you nitro during the world series…an event you’ve never experienced..

I think that all of this fighting is bull****. We are all baseball fans and both of these teams are great teams. We all knew that this series was not going to be easy. I am a long time Astros fan but I still have respect for the Cards. They are a great team and if for some reason the Astros do not make it to the World Series (which I have faith they will) I will be rooting for the Cards. I am also so sick of hearing about our ballpark and it’s dimensions. The field does not get any longer when the opposing team goes out there. It is the same size for everyone not just the Astros. I was upset and shocked the way we lost last night even though Pujols is a excellent batter Lidge is the best closer in the MLB but we do have Oswalt coming up on Wed. so I have’nt lost hope yet.
GO ‘Stros

Houston is a below avg team this year. Pettit and Clemens are only shadows of their past greatness. Oswalt has been good and there is no tougher closer than Lidge. Oswalt had a good game and Lidge is an ALMOST unbeatable closer. That said, the Cards are pretty much the best team in baseball in ’05 all around and if they were hitting the ball before the 8th inning, they would not even see Lidge. Yes, on avg, the calls, the bounces and injuries have been going the Astros way. But those wouldn’t be issues if the Cards were just swinging the bats as the did all year. Case and point – Edmonds (4 for 16, 4 walks) and Walker (2 for 15, 4 walks) have been non-existant at the plate when it counts and they better come to hit the ball rather than walk in game 6 so we can all see a game 7. I want to see both teams play as well as they can. If that happens, it will be better baseball and Busch stadium will finish it’s tenure with a World Series.

Pettitte and Clemens are only shadows? Clemens had his best year pitching-wise. Pettitte was THE starter to have down the stretch. They finished 1-2 in ERA. I don’t know what baseball games you’ve been watching but??? Edmonds and Walker have struggled because of OUTSTANDING pitching. Stick to what you know, building stuffed animals not baseball.

“just hardball”? not sure. everytime the astros have gone in hard into a bag they do it to take out the fielder and stop the play. any objective fan of the game saw the slide into Nunez as unnecessiarily hard ball. the fielder had no chance at making a play on the runner and yet Jason Lane somehow managed to finish the slide sitting on the bag with his legs pointing toward home. since Nunez was a half step inside the bag, lane could have slid straight into the bag and there wold have been no injury at all. the argument that the cards would have retaliated if it was a dirty play, makes the assumption that the Cards play at that same level of aggression. was it dirty? yes. dirty enough to do anything about? nope, just part of the game (at least the way the astros play it)

Darn! Only if Lane had sharpened his spikes… Go Astros!! Kill Poopoo-holes and the Cards!!

nitro once again shows his infantile knowledge and respect of the game..what an idiot

To nitro, I did not like your comment about Jason Lane. The ‘Stros do not play like that and even though we are trying to beat the cards, I think that Pujol is a excellent baseball player and I repect that. Even though I was upset about the homerun off my favorite closer Lidge I enjoyed watching it at the same time because I am a BASEBALL FAN!! I am sure in no way did Lane mean to kick Nunez, he was just in the wrong place at the wrong time so for you to say that Lane should have sharpened his spikes makes the ‘Stros look bad and their fans.

He didn’t mean to?!?! Are you really that naive? It’s called “breaking up a double play.” Did he mean to HURT him? Of course not! We’re the good guys! But he definitely meant to run him over. SHOULD have and ONLY IF, two DIFFERENT meanings, which one did I use? Either way, it was a joke referring to the golden days of Ty Cobb, lighten up and read carefully.
Rickie-boy, you getting worried? Your name calling shows that you are. It’s all right, mate.

Gotta admit. I think we’ll get choked tonight. With the Oz pitching and the bullpen they have. Lidge is more than determind. So you’ll be eating your words, Rick. You’ll end up being the idiot.

I said elsewhere that if Oswalt brings his “A” game to St. Louis, tonight … it’s probably over. At least we will have our original lineup back for what may be the last game at Busch Stadium. BUT … if the Astros lose tonight, I think the Cards finish as winners. They have done well against Clemens several times.

Like Monday, you don’t want to get to Pujols. In the series, I don’t think Houston wants to have to use Clemens. Tonight is their best chance to win.

As to hardball, the Astros always ratchet things up late in the year. I have a lot of respect for that. Do I think Lane meant to hurt Nunez? Only Lane can really answer that, but it is very strange that our backup 3rd basemen (remember, Rolen is out with surgery) got hurt and forced us to put guys at the corner who normally don’t play there. Worse, a lot of balls started to get hit that direction … so if it was just an accident, it was certainly very much to Houston’s advantage. May have even won them Game 3.

idiot comment was in reference to nitro’s spiking comment….gosh…some of you people just cant read..not to mention understanding innuendo (I know, I know..big word for some of you..look it up)

and I’m stunned to hear from a StL source the term “Oz” mentioned to anyone but the real Wizard (O. Smith)…shameful

If the Cards lose tonight or tomorrow night it will in no way reflect the wild card entry being the better team…no way, no way no way….only we can beat ourselves in this series.

the world series matchup with the White Sox is a different story…they won 99 games and are an excellent team…we will have to play sooooo much better than our current performance vs. this wild card entry.

I am sorry nitro if I misunderstood you post. I am just on edge having to constantly defend the Astros against all of these people.
Andrea

In no way does that mean we’re the better team? Spoken like a true loser. You keep changing your stance on who’s going to win. Also your “big word for some of us” comment? Come down off your high horse. Calling me an idiot is okay with me but beginning to include the rest of the people isn’t. You’ve taken this one step too far. Take a good look at yourself, Rickie-boy. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree. See you in the next year.

I agree about turning on your team. I am a turn blue astros fan, and roger clemens is my idol! I never gave up on them, and like chris burke said the other day after the cards won game 5 – it’s not over until the last out is called! I will stand by my guys until the end! GO ‘STROS!!

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