Game 4s: BELT-ran and solving Rivera

Yesterday’s games:
Astros 6, Cardinals 5
Red Sox 6, Yankees 4, 12 innings

Cardinals-Astros series tied 2-2
Well, here we are. Series tied. Fresh start. Best of three. We’ll have to see how the rookie Brandon Backe does tonight at home, where the Astros haven’t lost since August 22, when the Cubs won the rubber match of a three-game series 11-6. If this series was any indication, the AP story said, Houston is going to have a tough time overtaking the Cubs in the standings. Chicago was only a ninth-inning rally on Saturday away from a sweep. “This puts us in a bind,” Astros manager Phil Garner said. “We’re not out of it, but it’s going to be tough.” At the time, the Cubs were 67-56, the Astros 61-62. Chicago went 22-23 the rest of the way, Houston 31-8. No matter what happens tonight, the thinking is that Roger Clemens will get the nod on three days’ rest to pitch either a season-saving or a potential clinching Game 6 in St. Louis on Wednesday. What’s been really great about this postseason is watching Carlos Beltran emerge as the superstar fantasy players and many others truly believed he was. The tragedy will be if he really does sign with the Yankees in the offseason.

Yankees lead series 3-1
Imagine if this game had happened in any other game than a Game 4 with the Red Sox down 0-3. It’s the kind of game that can turn things around, that can propell a team on a run that ends in a series — or a World Series — victory. It’s the kind of loss, particularly when you note that, once again the Red Sox got to Mariano Rivera. Yet, all it does is make it a 3-1 series, basically pushing back the inevitable and making it one Boston win from allowing the Yankees to clinch the AL pennant at home. No team has ever bounced back from an 0-3 deficit to win, and while it will happen one day, it’s probably not going to be the Yankees who blow it.

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