St. Louis Cardinals 8, Santa Ynez Sox 7 (11 innings)

‘Elmore Blast in 11th Inning Secures Crown.’

By Rick Arbogast, special to MSBL

Maryvale Stadium, Phoenix, 10/29/2015–The St. Louis Cardinals proved the old saying, “failure before success” as they captured the 55-over Central World Series Championship this year after losing in the final game in 2014.

The Cardinals took an early 1 to 0 lead in the first on a tremendous RBI triple to left field off the bat of Mike Stewart. Mike followed up in the sixth inning with another solid shot down the line in left for a double then added a leadoff single in the eighth, which knotted the score at eight apiece. Clean-up hitter Todd Prescott then laid down a beautiful sacrifice bunt moving Stewart into scoring position. After a walk to Scott Posey and a fly out to right by Andy Bowie, Don Stovall came through with a clutch base hit.As the game moved into the ninth inning the Sox were at the top of their order. John Ramirez, who had singled his previous two at bats, walked to start the inning. The Sox proved they also could execute atcrunch time as Jimmy DeWitt put down his second sacrifice bunt of the game moving Ramirez to second. Number three hitter John Brinckerhoff came through with a solid single to put runners at first and third with only one out. At this point the Cards made a change on the mound and brought in the ace of the staff, Tyler Steinbach, who proved to be too much for the Sox. Tyler promptly struck out the next two batters swinging.

As the game moved into extra innings the Sox put two men on base but the rally ended with a 6-4-3 double play in the tenth. In the top of the eleventh the Sox John Hernandez led off with a solid single and then Mike Fandel laid down his second sacrifice bunt of the game moving Hernandez over to second base. Rick Fridrich then worked a base on balls. Ron Smylie then hit a hard smash right down the third base line, which Todd Prescott was able to get to and turn yet another double play for the second time in two innings squashing the Sox rally. In the bottom of the eleventh with one out Stovall doubled. Dave Elmore then stepped to the plate as his teammates were affectionately singing the ‘Elmo’ song. Dave then smashed a line shot base hit to left plating Stovall to capture the Championship for the Cards.Mike Tysdal, the head coach of the Cards, stated, “the turning point of the tournament was the game against the Phillies where we were down by five runs in the second inning and came back. This was a team effort. We had a different MVP for each game.” When asked how it felt to be the coach of a World Series Championship Team he responded by saying, “it feels good for the guys that have been with me for years and this is their first one. I’ve been working hard to get them their 1st ring.”

Team                                  1     2     3     4     5     6     7     8     9     10     11        R

Santa Ynez Sox                 0     1     1     0     0     2     3     0     0       0       0        7

St. Louis Cardinals           1     0     0     3     0     2     0     1     0       0       1        8WP: Tyler Steinbach LP: Rick Fridrich

HR: none

3B: Cards – Stewart

2B: Cards – Stewart, Prescott , Stovall

Leading Hitters: Cards – Stewart 3×4, 2R, RBI; Prescott 2×4, 2R, SAC; Posey 2×4, 2RBI’s, R, BB; Stovall 2×3, 2RBI’s, BB; Elmore 2×5, 2RBI’s; Jones 2×5. Sox –Ramirez 2×3, 2RBI’s, BB; Vondette 2×4, 2RBI’s

SAC: Cards – Prescott; Bowie; Steinbach. Sox – DeWitt (2); Fandel (2);Nuzzolilo

SF: Cards – Stovall

SB: none

Team LOB: Cards – 7. Sox – 12

Time of Game: 3:46