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St. Louis Cardinals Top Los Angeles Dodgers 5-2, Regain Wild Card Lead

The St. Louis Cardinals' Wild Card lead had vanished Sunday morning, after Jason Motte's blown save on Saturday night led to an in-series tie with the Los Angeles Dodgers. Sunday, in the 12th inning, it came back decisively on a Jon Jay double into the right field gap. That scored Matt Carpenter, and RBI from Allen Craig and Yadier Molina drove the score to 5-2, which was, finally, more than enough for Jason Motte.

Craig, 2-6 with a double and two RBI, was the offensive hero of the afternoon, but Adam Wainwright's pitching performance--six two-run innings, after an ugly start to his September--also deserves mention. As does Yadier Molina's usual impressiveness on offense and defense: He went 0-2 with three walks on offense and caught two baserunners stealing, including Dee Gordon for the second time in the series.

But the individual statistics don't much matter Sunday afternoon. The Cardinals' weakest links--their bullpen, their hitting in extra innings, all of that--came through when they needed to, and their 2012 heroes continued their heroics, and the Cardinals won, taking a one-game lead in the Wild Card race with them out of Los Angeles.