The St. Louis Cardinals shut out the Philadelphia Phillies 1-0 and the Milwaukee Brewers defeated the Arizona Diamondbacks 3-2 in 10 innings in fifth-game deciders to advance to the National League Championship Series.
The Brewers, who won their first postseason series since 1982, will host the Cardinals tomorrow in the first game of a best-of-seven series for a chance to go to the World Series. The Texas Rangers host the Detroit Tigers tonight in the start of the American League Championship Series.
At Citizens Bank Park in Philadelphia, Chris Carpenter, 11-9 during the regular season, pitched nine scoreless innings, giving up three hits and striking out three for the Cardinals. He threw 70 strikes in 110 pitches.
“I was able to keep the ball down and the guys made some great plays behind me,” Carpenter said in a televised interview after beating a Phillies team which had Major League Baseball’s best regular-season record and was the favorite of Las Vegas oddsmakers to win the World Series. “Everyone was expecting us to have no chance. We just played like we knew we could.”
Carpenter said his greatest pitch of the game was the final one with two outs in the ninth to Ryan Howard, who hit a ground ball and then stumbled leaving the batter’s box and collapsed along the first-base line. Howard injured his left Achilles tendon and will have an MRI exam today, according to the Phillies website.
Rafael Furcal scored on Skip Schumaker’s double in the first inning to give the Cardinals a 1-0 lead. Schumaker left the game in the bottom of the third with a tight right oblique muscle.
Roy Halladay surrendered one run on six hits and struck out seven in eight innings for the Phillies. Ryan Madson pitched a perfect ninth inning, striking out two.
The Cardinals, down by 10 1/2 games in the wild-card chase in late August, rallied to reach the division series.
“We have some characters with great guts and great heart,” said manager Tony La Russa.
At Miller Park in Milwaukee, the Brewers won their first National League postseason series. In 1982, the team was a member of the American League.
“We heard all about 1982,” Ryan Braun said in a televised interview. “Now we can start our own legacy.”
Nyjer Morgan hit a single up the middle off J.J. Putz to drive home Carlos Gomez from second base in the bottom of the 10th inning. Gomez, who had reached first on a single with one out, had advanced to second on a steal.
The Diamondbacks had tied the game 2-2 in the ninth on a run-scoring bunt single by Willie Bloomquist. It was Arizona’s first run since the third inning, when Justin Upton hit a solo home run off starter Yovani Gallardo.
Jerry Hairston Jr.’s sacrifice fly in the fourth drove in the Brewers’ first run in the game. Yuniesky Betancourt hit a run-scoring single in the sixth to give the Brewers a 2-1 lead.
Milwaukee reliever John Axford got the win, allowing one run on three hits in two innings while striking out two. Putz took the loss, allowing a run on two hits in a third of an inning.
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