ST. LOUIS – Juan Yepez breaks a scoreless tie in the seventh-inning with a two-run, pinch-hit home run. The home run gave the St. Louis Cardinals a late 2-0 lead before the Philadelphia Phillies rallied to a 6-3 comeback win in Game 1 of the Wild Card Series.
Yepez pinch-hit for Corey Dickerson in the seventh inning. The tiebreaking hit comes after the Phillies lifted starting pitcher Zack Wheeler, who held the Cardinals scoreless over 6.1 innings.
It proved to be an opportune time for Yepez’s postseason hit, one of just three the Cardinals have mustered through the first seven innings.
“A great swing and a huge moment for our team,” said Cardinals third baseman Nolan Arenado on the at-bat. “Credit to him for staying in, coming ready and having a great at-bat.”
“Everybody has a role on their roster and they understand where they fit and how they fit into the game,” said Cardinals manager Oli Marmol. “[Yepez] came in and did exactly what we talked about. A big swing.”
Almost three months earlier, Yepez was one of four to go deep in the Cardinals streak of four consecutive at-bats with home runs, a feat St. Louis accomplished at the Phillies’ home ballpark.
Jose Quintana started the game for the Cardinals, firing 5.1 scoreless innings with three strikeouts. The Cardinals had a 2-0 lead entering the ninth inning, but after Ryan Helsley departed with some finger concerns, St. Louis lost the lead and couldn’t overcome it.
The winner of the Cardinals-Phillies Wild Card Series will advance to take on the Atlanta Braves in the National League Division Series next week. The Cardinals will need to win two consecutive games on Saturday and Sunday in order to advance.