Originally posted on Fox Sports Midwest  |  Last updated 8/18/12
ST. LOUIS Two days after giving up a pair of ninth inning home runs in a devastating 2-1 loss to the Arizona Diamondbacks, Jason Motte took to the mound Saturday for his next save chance. But in a game the Cardinals desperately needed as they look to track down the Pittsburgh Pirates in the Wild Card chase, Motte loaded the bases with no outs and the home team clinging to a 5-3 lead. But unlike some fans who were probably thinking, "here we go again", Motte erased Thursday's struggles from his memory. And he didn't let an error on David Freese or a hit-by-pitch to Jordy Mercer that loaded the bases bother him either. Motte allowed a run on a fielder's choice to make it 5-4 but struck out Garrett Jones and got Josh Harrison to ground out to end the Pirates comeback attempt and move the Cardinals to within one game of Pittsburgh for the second Wild Card spot in the National League. "I didn't really think about the other day at all," Motte said. "I was out there and said, I have to get this guy at the plate.' That's pretty much exactly what I was thinking. Yadi said, 'Forget everything that's happened, you have to get this guy.' That's my mindset regardless of what happens, whether a guy gets on or doesn't get on. I'm trying to get the guy at the plate out." The save was No. 28 for the Motte, the fourth best total in the National League. But it didn't come easy, or without suspense. Appearing for the first time since allowing two solo home runs on consecutive pitches that served as the only two runs scored in a stunning 2-1 loss to Arizona, Motte was called upon to hold a 5-3 lead in front of 40,313 at Busch Stadium on Saturday. He served up a leadoff single to Gaby Sanchez before an error by Freese put the tying run on base with no out. But things got worse when he plunked Mercer on the wrist to load the bases with nobody out for No. 3 hitter Andrew McCutchen, the leading hitter in the National League. Instead of thinking about the past and worrying like some young pitchers might let themselves do, Motte got McCutchen to ground into a fielder's choice for the first out of the inning. But a run scored to make it 5-4 and the red-hot Garrett Jones was up next with the tying run on third and go-ahead run on first. "As a reliever, man, you don't really have a choice," Motte said of re-focusing and turning the page. "You can't go out there and worry about what just happened. If I was out there like, Oh man, bases loaded and McCutchen's up.' You can't do that. He's a good hitter and if you go out there thinking like that, then you are already (in trouble). "You have to go out there with a mindset that I'm going to do everything I can this pitch and go at it and I was able to make some pitches and get out of it. If I didn't make pitches, guess what? I would have still tried to get the next guy. You don't really have a choice, man. When you're out there, you don't have a choice." Motte fell behind Jones 3-0 before getting him to swing and miss at three straight fastballs for a huge strikeout. Harrison, who singled as a pinch-hitter in the eighth inning, then grounded into a fielder's choice to end the game. "That wasn't exactly by design but he did a great job of making pitches," said manager Mike Matheny. "He got a little bit nastier when he needed it. That's huge for his confidence and needless to say what that is for us." The Cardinals will get Jaime Garcia back from a two-month stay on the disabled list Sunday as they look to win the series and tie Pittsburgh for the second Wild Card spot. And Motte's short memory is a big reason why Saturday turned out like it did.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Kevin Love hurts shoulder after Kent Bazemore lands on it

Trump picks up endorsement from Lou Holtz, Gene Keady

Did Lakers commit tampering violation with Magic’s tweets?

Larry Bird, Pacers don’t sound committed to Frank Vogel

Justin Verlander, Kate Upton are engaged

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Josh Norman: Odell Beckham Jr. ‘trying to steal my bologna’

JJ Hardy reportedly out 6-8 weeks with fractured left foot

Title game hero Kris Jenkins returning to Villanova

University of Illinois is finally ready to find a new mascot

Luke Walton: D’Angelo Russell ‘can be a perennial All-Star’

Myles Jack: Fall out of first round was ‘humiliating’

WATCH: Billy Donovan plays dumb about SAS-OKC final play

Some questions about Space Jam 2 that need answers

Durant talks about getting name-drop on Drake's album

Hulk Hogan suing Gawker for leaking tape of racist rant

Randy Johnson to have street at Chase Field named after him

Five bizarre moments in Round 2 of the Stanley Cup Playoffs

Barry Trotz is disappointed with Brooks Orpik suspension

Lou Lamoriello hopes the Leafs never get the first pick again

Questions for the second-round NBA playoffs series

Softball team loses title due to premature celebration

After avoiding losing, the Raptors can focus on winning

How the Sharks have 'weathered the storm' against the Predators

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Five bizarre moments in Round 2 of the Stanley Cup Playoffs

How the Sharks have 'weathered the storm' against the Predators

Okay, who stole the Kansas City Royals player off that billboard?

Eight players to watch in Round 2 of the Stanley Cup Playoffs

A Round-By-Round Look At the NFL Draft

10 biggest takeaways from the NBA playoffs thus far

QUIZ: Name every No. 1 overall pick in the NFL Draft since 1985

NHL postseason Round 2 quick hits: Sharks vs. Predators

NHL postseason Round 2 quick hits: Blues vs. Stars

NHL postseason Round 2 quick hits: Capitals vs. Penguins

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker