The Cardinals knew what they were getting in Mark Reynolds. A guy with some pop in his bat and the ability to drive in runs. He has 226 career home runs and 622 career RBI. He also swings and misses a lot, too. That’s what happened in the bottom of the ninth. His strikeout, then a force out at second left Peter Bourjas stranded 90 feet away with the tying run as the Cardinals were denied their ninth win in a row in a 6-5 final with the Chicago Cubs.
Reynolds has now struck out 1,414 times in his career. Against Cubs closer Hector Rondon, Reynolds needed to put the ball in the play, get a flyball to the outfield and the game is going into extra innings. Instead, Reynolds missed on a Rondon mistake.
“He hung me a slider I should have put in play,” said Reynolds. “I didn’t get it done. You move on.”
Reynolds finished the night 0-for-5 with three strikeouts in the cleanup spot.
Reynolds wasn’t the only Cardinal hitter who failed to come through. There were other opportunities to deliver the big hit after the Cardinals pulled to within a run each time. Matt Adams struck out stranding two in scoring position against Cubs starter Jon Lester in the sixth. In the eighth, Jon Jay had the potential tying run on second and go-ahead run at first. He grounded into an inning-ending double play.
It’s tough to criticize the missed chances of one night when you look back on the previous two games in this series, along with the Pittsburgh series. Cardinals try to start another win streak Thursday afternoon in the series finale.