The St. Louis Cardinals had the Miami Marlins in a vulnerable position in the bottom of the ninth of Friday night's ballgame. Down 3-2, St. Louis had runners on first and second with two outs. Carlos Beltran was at the plate and Marlins closer Heath Bell was on the verge of the type of implosion that has been routine for him in 2012. But Bell got Beltran to chop a grounder up the middle, where it was fielded by Marlins second baseman Omar Infante, who whipped the ball across his body and got Beltran at first by a step.
But, truly, St. Louis probably shouldn't have been in that situation in the first place. The Cardinals tallied ten hits prior to the ninth inning, but only cashed in a single run. They also were sloppy in the field, gifting the Marlins their first run thanks to two errors by David Freese and ensuring that a second one would score when Jake Westbrook airmailed a throw to first on a Jose Reyes dribbler in the seventh, though Reyes would've almost certainly been safe either way.
The eventual game-winning run came for Miami in the eighth inning, when Logan Morrison smacked a homer to right field off St. Louis reliever Maikel Cleto to bring the score to 3-1. It was that type of big blast that the Cardinals, who left 20 men on base, couldn't seem to run into on Friday night.
The two teams will be back on the field tomorrow at 3:10 p.m. CT.
For updates, stay tuned to SB Nation St. Louis. For more in-depth coverage of this series,check out Cardinals blog Viva El Birdos and Marlins blog Fish Stripes. News and notes from around Major League Baseball can be found at Baseball Nation.