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MLB.com rates the performances
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League Championship Series
10/12/2002 8:42 pm ET 
MLB.com rates the performances
By Jared Hoffman / MLB.com

The Cardinals were desperate for a win after dropping the first two games at Busch Stadium. They got it, but it didn't come easy. The Cardinals trailed 1-0 after two innings but bounced back to take a 2-1 lead in the third. Barry Bonds appeared to deflate St. Louis' hopes with a game-tying homer in the fifth but once again the Cardinals immediately grabbed the lead and held on for the 5-4 win. St. Louis still has much work to do, but rallying from a two games-to-one deficit is much easier than being down three games to none.

Cardinals

One riverboat: Your performance has Proud Mary wearing a paper bag
Two riverboats: Not even hope could float your boat
Three riverboats: You're up the river but without a paddle
Four riverboats: You're rolling, rolling, rolling down the river
Five riverboats: You're as mighty as the Mississippi River


Tino Martinez: It appears Martinez forgot to bring his clutch postseason hitting with him from New York. Martinez was 0-for-4 in this game to fall to 1-for-22 in the postseason. Martinez stranded three more runners in Game 3 to bring his total for the series to nine. In the third, after Albert Pujols and J.D. Drew walked, Martinez hit a weak grounder in front of the plate and was thrown out at first.


Chuck Finley: Finley took a 4-1 lead into the fifth but allowed a three-run homer to Barry Bonds after issuing a leadoff walk to Rich Aurilia and a single to Jeff Kent. However, Finley kept the Cardinals in the game in the early going. When the St. Louis defense handed the Giants two extra outs in the first, Finley kept them off the scoreboard.


Eli Marrero and Mike Matheny: They each went 1-for-4 but those hits were solo home runs. Matheny, who had only three homers in the regular season and none since April 26, homered in the third. Marrero, making his first start of the NLCS, led off the sixth with a home run to left field off Jay Witasick that put the Cardinals ahead for good at 5-4.


Jim Edmonds: In a big eight-pitch at-bat in the fifth, Edmonds hit an opposite field homer off Russ Ortiz to extend the lead to 4-1. Edmonds also shined on defense. In the first, Edmonds made a great catch on a pop fly with Fernando Vina attempting the grab and blocking Edmond's vision. The bases were loaded with two outs at the time so if Edmonds doesn't make the catch, the Giants score two runs.


The bullpen: The Cardinals relief corps was superb in shutting out the Giants for four innings. After St. Louis took a 5-4 lead in the top of the sixth, Dave Veres came in and threw a perfect sixth. In the seventh, the Giants had the bases loaded and only one out but Veres struck out Reggie Sanders and Steve Kline got J.T. Snow to ground out. Rick White got a key out in the eighth with the tying run at second, and closer Jason Isringhausen worked a scoreless ninth.

Giants

One cable car: Broken down in the middle of rush-hour traffic
Two cable cars: Standing in a long line waiting for your turn
Three cable cars: Packed with tourists, but enjoying the ride
Four cable cars: Climbing halfway to the stars
Five cable cars: Atop Nob Hill, and you get to ring the bell


Reggie Sanders: Sanders has been consistent at the plate -- going hitless in each game. In the first two games combined, the eight base runners stranded by Sanders was a mere footnote as the Giants won each game. In this game, he went 0-for-5 and his eight runners left on base really sticks out. He left the bases loaded in the first and the seventh.


Kenny Lofton: Lofton went 0-for-5 and is 0-for-10 since getting angry when he felt a pitch from Mike Crudale was too close in Game 1. In this game, Lofton came up with the bases loaded and none out in the second but hit a ground ball to Tino Martinez, who forced out J.T. Snow at the plate. In the Cardinals' two-run third, Lofton over-ran a fly ball from Fernando Vina and had it go off his glove for a double.


Russ Ortiz: Ortiz delivered two wins in the NLDS against Atlanta in the first round, but wasn't at his sharpest against St. Louis. Ortiz, who allowed just three homers at Pacific Ball Park in the regular season, allowed two in Game 3 of the NLCS, one to Mike Matheny and one to Jim Edmonds.


Rich Aurilia: After homering twice in Game 2, Aurilia showed great patience at the plate in Game 3. He was asked to lay down a sacrifice bunt in the first and did the job. In the second, he drove in the Giants' first run with a sacrifice fly to center. He walked to lead off the fifth and later scored on Barry Bonds' homer, and led off the seventh with a double high off the center-field wall.


Barry Bonds: After flying out with the bases loaded to end the second, Bonds redeemed himself in the fifth. With the Giants down 4-1, Bonds crushed a 1-0 pitch from Chuck Finley into McCovey Cove for a game-tying three-run homer. It was Bonds' fourth homer of this postseason.

Jared Hoffman is an editorial producer for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.




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