ATLANTA (AP) – The St. Louis Cardinals will be advancing in the playoffs. They clinched the wildcard game by winning 6-3 in Atlanta against the Braves.
The Cards will face the Washington Nationals in a series at Busch Stadium in St. Louis starting on Sunday.
Matt Holliday homered and the defending World Series champion Cardinals benefited from three Braves errors.
Chipper Jones played his final game for the Braves, and made a crucial throwing error in the fourth inning that led to three runs.
But the first game in the majors’ new postseason round and one-and-done matchup will be remembered forever for a wild play in the eighth on a shallow fly to left field.
The NL wild-card playoff game at Turner Field was halted after Atlanta fans littered the field with trash over a disputed infield fly call.
Trailing 6-3 in the eighth inning, the Braves appeared to catch a break when a fly ball to short left field dropped between St. Louis shortstop Pete Kozma and left fielder Matt Holliday after a mix-up over who had it.
But just before the ball dropped, left field umpire Sam Holbrook signaled an automatic out because of the infield fly rule, designed to prevent a team from intentionally dropping a popup in order to get extra outs with more than one runner on base.
Instead of Atlanta having the bases loaded with one out, Andrelton Simmons was called out. The fans immediately started hurling cups and trash, covering the field.
The St. Louis Cardinals won baseball’s first wild-card playoff, taking advantage of a disputed infield fly call that led to a protest and fans littering the field with debris to beat the Atlanta Braves 6-3 Friday.