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Philadelphia, PA (SportsNetwork. Nicolas Otamendi Jersey .com) - The best-of-seven NLCS lasted five games, but St. Louis Cardinals manager Mike Matheny will tell you it was a dogfight for both ballclubs. Mathenys Cardinals were denied at the turnstiles of entering a third World Series appearance in the last four years with Thursday nights heartbreaking 6-3 loss to the San Francisco Giants in the bottom of the ninth inning. It felt like a dogfight, and I think its good for the game of baseball, Matheny said. Were trying to win games but in retrospect you see that thats the kind of series I think people are expecting to see in the playoffs. I think the Giants, even though we only snuck out one, I think they knew they were in a fight. Some fans may argue watching balls sail out of the park is more entertaining, but others were treated to competitive baseball in this years NLCS. There were no homers hit in San Franciscos 3-0 victory in Game 1, but the Cardinals belted four in a 5-4 win in Game 2, including Kolten Wongs game-winner in the bottom of the ninth. Randal Grichuk hit the lone homer for St. Louis in Game 3 and Cardinals relief pitcher Randy Choate allowed the winning run to score in the bottom of the 10th on a throwing error to first base. The Cardinals never recovered after that and dropped the next two games. Wong went deep in a 6-4 loss in Game 4 after St. Louis blew a 4-3 lead, and homers by Matt Adams and Tony Cruz werent enough in Thursdays series-ending setback. Cardinals starting pitcher Michael Wacha came out of the bullpen in a crucial situation during the ninth inning. Wacha, the 2013 NLCS MVP against Los Angeles, was limited to 19 starts in the regular season and compiled a 5-6 mark with a 3.20 earned run average. He surrendered a leadoff single to Pablo Sandoval and walked Brandon Belt one out later. Then, left-handed hitter Travis Ishikawa drilled a 2-0 offering just over the wall in right to send San Francisco back to the World Series. I was looking fastball, Ishikawa said of Wachas pitch. I knew that he didnt want to get behind 3-0, (with the) chance of walking the bases loaded. I was just trying to be aggressive. The Giants were very aggressive in capturing their third World Series berth in the last five years and have won their last two trips to the Fall Classic. Much like the Cardinals in past postseason series, the Giants used unlikely heroes such as Ishikawa, Michael Morse and Joe Panik to keep the season alive. The Cardinals intended to make a second straight World Series appearance and couldnt pull it off. Matheny stood by his decision to use Wacha because the bullpen was short. I put him in a tough place without giving him much work lately. Thats on me, Matheny said. Hes a star. I cant wait to watch him pitch again when hes healthy and watch over a full season what hes going to do. I like having him out there. Im not ever afraid to get him on the mound. Closer Trevor Rosenthal was on hold for a possible save opportunity and Matheny could have gone with Carlos Martinez, Choate or Seth Maness. He opted for Wacha because he has confidence in the right-hander against lefty hitters. The plan backfired when Ishikawa sent the AT&T Park crowd into a frenzy. St. Louis, which won 90 games in the regular season and has finished first or second in the NL Central each of the past six seasons, blew a 3-2 lead in the eighth inning when Morse hit a pinch-hit, game-tying solo home run to left field off Pat Neshek. Neshek took over for what Matheny described as a done Adam Wainwright, who lasted seven innings and left the game with a one-run lead. Wainwright wasnt himself this postseason and was apparently bothered by an elbow issue he claimed was more of a mechanics problem than physical. He was 0-1 in three postseason starts with a 5.63 earned run average. His ERA never went higher than three in the regular season, as he posted a 20-9 record and a 2.38 ERA. Matheny was asked if it was tough pulling Wainwright after his seven strong innings Thursday. Not at all, he was done, Matheny said. Even going to him in six you could see he had worked hard, been very good. He was terrific, but he was done. Wainwrights only mistake was a two-run homer by Panik in the third inning. The Panik pitch he hit out, it was really a pretty good pitch, Wainwright said. It was in off the plate, and he made a very good swing. Baseball players occasionally will make good swings on balls. Aside from the pitch he hit out, I was sharp most of the day. It was easily Wainwrights best performance of October, and now with the offseason upon the Cardinals, the right-hander and the rest of the club can rest up before training resumes for next year. The Cardinals had a 4.25 earned run average in the postseason and their bullpen put up a 4.13 ERA. Meanwhile, the Dodgers lost to the Cardinals, 3-1, in the NLDS because Clayton Kershaw failed to carry over his impressive regular season into the playoffs. Wainwright was too little, too late on the big stage as well and could have made it easier on St. Louis had he been at full strength. St. Louis big bats were active in the postseason to the tune of 15 home runs, which accounted for 21 of the teams 34 runs. The Cardinals batted .235 in the playoffs and were last in the National League in homers in the regular season (105). Matt Holliday and Jhonny Peralta came up small in the playoffs after leading the Cardinals in most offensive categories over a 162-game stretch. Would the results have been different with a healthy Yadier Molina? Probably not because the Giants caught a wave of momentum, and also luck, at the right time to set up a World Series date with the Kansas City Royals. It would have been nice to see a Show Me State rematch of the 1985 World Series between the Cards and Royals, but the baseball Gods had other ideas. Its tough to go out like that after all the Cardinals endured throughout the regular season with Milwaukee collapsing and the battles against Pittsburgh for NL Central supremacy. Cincinnati dropped off in its quest for a division crown and the Cardinals took their chances while the iron was hot. Theres no question that everybody in this room is hurting right now, Cards third baseman Matt Carpenter said. But at the end of the day, when you look at what we were able to accomplish with the adversity that we had, some of the injuries, battling all the way to win the division and get us to this point, theres a lot to be proud of. Its going to probably take a while to let that sink in and appreciate what we were able to accomplish. Right now it does hurt. Matheny said the Cardinals should be proud of what they accomplished and not hang their heads. He admires the clubs resiliency and fight, and how it made no excuses even though there were plenty to be made such as injuries and ineffectiveness from a few players. Mathenys had nothing but success and gets the most out of his players in his time in the Gateway City. Will Matheny ever get over the hump and win a World Series? Maybe. Tony La Russa did it before he retired in 2011 and Matheny has plenty of years ahead of him to accomplish the feat whether its in St. Louis or not. Right now he has the best chance to win with this roster. The Cardinals may be down at the moment, and rightfully so. Theyll welcome back many familiar faces for spring training in 2015, when the doors swing open on what should be another promising season. So dont close the arches just yet for St. Louis because these types of runs into October are going to continue over the next few years. Lucas Biglia Argentina Jersey . First, Ivan Nova decided to have season-ending Tommy John elbow surgery. Then Michael Pineda was suspended for 10 games for using pine tar. Nahuel Guzman Argentina Jersey . Head coach Corey Chamblin announced on Monday that Avon Cobourne had been hired as the defending Grey Cup champions new running backs coach. http://www.argentinasoccerauthority.com/lucas-biglia-argentina-jersey/ .com) - SirDominic Pointer posted career highs of 24 points and seven steals to lead No.NEW YORK -- Michael Sam was picked by the St. Louis Rams in the seventh round of the NFL draft Saturday, becoming the first openly gay player drafted by a pro football team. Sam played at Missouri, and came out as gay in media interviews earlier this year. His team and coaches knew his secret and kept it for his final college season. He went on to have the best season of his career: He was the Southeastern Conference defensive player of the year. "Thank you to the St. Louis Rams and the whole city of St. Louis. Im using every once of this to achieve greatness!!" Sam tweeted with a frenzied typo moments after he was picked, including a picture of himself wearing a Rams cap and a pink polo shirt. The pick came after several rounds of suspense. The first round of the day came and went, no Sam. Then the second, and the third, and finally, the day was down to just a handful of picks. When Mike Kensil, the NFLs vice-president of game operations, walked to the podium at Radio City Music Hall in the drafts final minutes to announce the Rams second-to-last pick, the crowd got a sense something was up. Very few of the last day picks were announced at the podium. Twitter lit up with suggestions the Rams were about to make news. When Kensil said: "The St. Louis Rams select ... Michael Sam..." the fans gave a hearty cheer, chanting "Yes! Yes! Yes!" and "Michael Sam!" Sam was in San Diego watching with friends and family at the home of his agent, Joe Barkett of Empire Athletes. ESPN and the NFL Network had cameras there and showed Sams reaction. Sam was on the phone bending over, with his boyfriend hugging him and rubbing his left bicep. When Sam got off the phone, the tears started. He gave his boyfriend a big kiss and a long hug as he cried and his eyes reddened. After, they shared cake -- and another kiss. Sam will start his professional career not ffar from the place where he played his college ball, with three former Missouri teammates. Federico Fazio Jersey. The 6-foot-2, 255-pound Sam was considered a mid-to-late round pick, far from a sure thing to be drafted. He played defensive end in college, but hes short for that position in the NFL and slower than most outside linebackers, the position hell need to transition to at the professional level. He was taken with the 249th overall pick out of 256. Players from Marist, Maine and McGill University in Canada were selected before Sam. "In the world of diversity we live in now, Im honoured to be a part of this," Rams coach Jeff Fisher said during an interview on ESPN. The impact of Sams selection goes far beyond football. At a time when gay marriage is gaining acceptance among Americans, Sams entry into the NFL is a huge step toward the integration of gay men into professional team sports. Pro sports have in many ways lagged behind the rest of society in acceptance. Publicly, most people in and related to the NFL have been supportive of Sam. NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell has said Sam would be welcome in the league and judged solely on his ability to play. A few wondered whether teams would be reluctant to draft Sam because of all the media attention that would come with it. Fair or not, the NFL -- coming off a season in which a bullying scandal involving players on the Miami Dolphins was one of the biggest stories in sports -- was looking at a possible public relations hit if Sam was not drafted. He would likely have been signed as a free agent and given a chance to make a team in training camp, but to many it would have looked as if he was being rejected. Now that hes there, it could be seen as an opportunity for the NFL to show that crass locker room culture is not as prevalent as it might have looked to those who followed the embarrassing Dolphins scandal. Wholesale Jerseys 2019 China Jerseys Wholesale NFL Jerseys Wholesale Authentic Jerseys Wholesale Jerseys 2018 Cheap NFL Womens Jerseys Cheap Jerseys ' ' '
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