This is filed under the “Just when you think you’ve seen it all” Category. Barry Zito’s pitching was superb tonight in Game 5 of the NLCS between the San Francisco Giants and the St. Louis Cardinals. He pitched a shut-out into the 8th Inning with 115 total pitches and the Giants won the game 5-0. I was considering not even watching the game because I figured if the Cardinals won I’d watch the next game which would be Game 1 of the World Series and if the Giants won, I’d be able to watch them play again Sunday, in San Francisco, in front of their home crowd. That way I could avoid watching the stressful nail-biter game I was sure it would be. But that’s not what happened. I mean it wasn’t a nail-biter.
Something else happened at Busch Stadium tonight that probably happens a lot in St. Louis but honestly I don’t think I’ve ever seen it before. It was one of those emotional moments I live for in sports, an honor to witness, via the telly of course, and I couldn’t wait to write about it.
During the 8th Inning, Bochy decided to replace Zito for whatever reason Boche decides to do these things, and Barry Zito walked off the mound after a really spectacular pitching performance, a shut-out. He also contributed an RBI single to his efforts. And as he walked off the mound across the field toward the dugout, those crazy Cardinal fans did something really spectacular. During this championship series game they stood up and gave Zito, the opposing pitcher who just zapped the spirit out of their home team, a standing ovation. They knew tonight Zito was the guy who put a door stop in their chance at least momentarily of winning the 2012 National League Pennant. A win tonight for the St Louis Cardinals would have propelled them right into the World Series. But that didn’t stop them from showing appreciation for a job well done. These fans are from Missouri, the “Show Me State” and he showed them a job well done, and they said thank you.
Just when you think you’ve seen it all. I’ve always had a genuine fondness for the Cardinal fans. I wrote about it last year on opening day “Those Classy Cardinals” and this is just another little reminder that the spirit of St Louis is alive and well and so is the spirit of baseball.
- Giants beat Cardinals behind Barry Zito, send series back to Bay (suntimes.com)
- Zito, Giants beat Cards, close NLCS deficit to 3-2 (kansascity.com)
- NLCS Game 5, Cardinals vs. Giants game recap: St. Louis falls 5-0 (stlouis.sbnation.com)