Tuesday, September 23, 2014

September 23, 1985 - Pendleton Sparks 5-4 Come-From-Behind Win Over Pirates

Monday, September 23, 1985 - At Busch Stadium II (Bob Forsch - Starting Pitcher) - Opponent:  Pittsburgh Pirates (Bob Walk - Starting Pitcher) - Attendance:  17,611

Terry Pendleton's two-out two-run eighth-inning triple lifted the Cardinals to a crucial 5-4 come-from-behind win over the Pittsburgh Pirates.  The win kept the first-place Cardinals (94-56) three games in front of the Mets (91-59) - whose 4-1 win over Philadelphia had already been posted on the scoreboard by the time the Cardinals took their turn at bat in the eighth-inning, trailing by a run.

The Pirates broke out on top early, forcing the Cardinals to play "catch up" - prior to Pendleton's eighth-inning hit that gave St Louis its first lead of the game.

Cardinals' starter Bob Forsch struggled in the early going, as Pittsburgh scored a first-inning run on a lead-off walk to R.J. Reynolds, a stolen base and Sid Bream's RBI single - then added another run in the second when Joe Orsulak's two-out double scored Tony Pena.

The Cardinals tied it in the second off Pirates' starter Bob Walk - on back-to-back singles by Darrell Porter and Andy Van Slyke, an RBI single by Mike Jorgensen and an RBI ground-out off the bat of Ozzie Smith.

The scored remained knotted at two runs apiece until the Pirates plated two more runs off a tiring Forsch in the sixth-inning.  With one out, Jim Morrison lit a fire for the Pirates with a solo home run, to take a 3-2 lead.  After Sammy Khalifa singled, advanced to second on Walk's sacrifice bunt - Orsulak drove in his second run of the game with a single - giving the Pirates a 4-2 lead - signaling the end of the night for Forsch (5.2 IP - 9 H - 4 R - 2 BB - 4 SO - 1 HR).

At that point, manager Whitey Herzog brought in reliever Pat Perry to retire the side - and he did.  After getting into a little seventh-inning trouble, reliever Bill Campbell entered the game with two on and one out, and proceeded to strike out the only two batters he faced - to keep the deficit to two runs.

The Cardinals reduced the deficit to a single run, when Pendleton doubled to start the bottom of the seventh, advanced to third on Jorgensen's fly ball to right, then scored on Ozzie's single - his second RBI of the game.  With that, Walk's night was over (6.1 IP - 6 H - 3 R - 1 BB - 3 SO).  He exited with the lead, but it was a lead the Pirates' bullpen could not protect.

After reliever Pat Clements got the final two outs in the seventh, Willie McGee greeted him with a lead-off single in the eighth.  Two outs later, McGee was still on first base as another pitching change was made - Cecilio Guante was brought in to face Cesar Cedeno.  At that point, Willie stole second, then advanced to third when the red-hot Cedeno singled to left.

With two out and runners on the corners, Pendleton came through with his two-run triple - putting the Cardinals on top for the first time in this game, 5-4.  Those five runs had been driven in by the tail-end of the batting order:  Pendleton (2), Jorgensen (1) and Smith (2) - the 6th, 7th and 8th-place hitters took care of the offensive business tonight.

Jeff Lahti (5-2) worked 1.2 innings for the win - although he needed ninth-inning relief from Todd Worrell when Bream's two-out double suddenly put the tying run in scoring position.  Worrell got the one-out save - his fourth of the season - as Herzog's Closer By Committee strategy had been modified with the arrival of the hard-throwing rookie.

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