St. Louis Cardinals Yadier Molina tries to make it to first base before getting mobbed by teammates after getting hit by a pitch with bases loaded against the Cincinnati Reds in the ninth inning at Busch Stadium in St. Louis on August 8, 2016. St. Louis won the game 5-4. Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI | License Photo
ST. LOUIS -- Michael Wacha was lying down in the trainer's room as the bottom of the ninth inning started Monday night, three outs from absorbing a loss.
Then the St. Louis Cardinals, seemingly doomed to a third consecutive home defeat against a last-place team, started putting runners on and getting them home.
"Seriously, I've never seen anything like it," Wacha said.
Scoring five runs after being down to the final out, St. Louis stunned the Cincinnati Reds 5-4.
Yadier Molina notched the game-winning RBI when he was plunked in the ribs by a 1-0 fastball from Ross Ohlendorf, and he celebrated by sliding into first base as the remnants from a crowd of 40,616 erupted.
It was the first time the Cardinals (59-53) walked off with a five-run rally in the 11-year history of Busch Stadium III.
"I was hoping you'd describe it for me," St. Louis manager Mike Matheny said.
The inning started out as more of the same for a team which was 0-for-11 with men in scoring position over the first eight innings. After Molina's leadoff single, Cincinnati closer Tony Cingrani got a pair of flyouts.
However, Cingrani suddenly imploded. Tommy Pham drew a four-pitch walk, and pinch hitter Kolten Wong was hit on the first pitch, filling the bases.
Matt Carpenter laced a two-run single to right, scoring Molina and Pham. Stephen Piscotty followed by lining an RBI single to left, plating Wong to make it 4-3.
After a four-pitch walk to Matt Holliday, Cingrani (2-4) exited for Ohlendorf. However, Ohlendorf couldn't finish off Brandon Moss after being ahead 1-2, missing high on a 3-2 pitch to force pinch runner Jeremy Hazelbaker home with the tying run.
"He threw a couple of good pitches to me, but I didn't think he could make those pitches through the entire at-bat," Moss said of Ohlendorf. "I waited for a good pitch to hit and stayed with my approach."
Molina then finished what he started the painful way, the first win for the Cardinals via a hit batter since Jon Jay took one for the team on Aug. 14, 2014, against, coincidentally, the Reds.
"I was really disappointed to not be able to come through in a big situation like that," Ohlendorf said. "It was a fun situation as a pitcher, a chance to really make a difference for us, so it was disappointing when it doesn't happen."
Seth Maness (2-2) worked a clean ninth as St. Louis moved into a tie for the National League's second wild-card spot with the Miami Marlins.
The result ruined what was shaping up as a special night for Cincinnati rookie left-hander Cody Reed, who was in line for his first major league win.
Reed, who entered the game 0-6 with a 7.30 ERA, tossed six shutout innings. He gave up just four hits and a walk while striking out four.
The Reds (45-66) reached Wacha for three second-inning runs with two outs. Zack Cozart lined a two-run double over left fielder Holliday, and Joey Votto followed with his first triple of the year to right-center.
Eugenio Suarez made it 4-0 in the third with an infield out that scored Brandon Phillips, who doubled to lead off the inning.
Wacha departed after five innings. He gave up six hits and four runs while issuing four walks and striking out three. However, the Cardinals' shocking outburst turned him from a loser into a superstitious spectator.
"I wasn't doing much moving from my spot," he said.
NOTES: St. Louis 2B Matt Carpenter was back in the lineup Monday night after sitting out Sunday's game as a precaution, and he went 2-for-5 with two RBIs. Manager Mike Matheny lifted him Saturday night after five innings, feeling Carpenter's swing didn't look right. Carpenter returned Friday night after missing a month with a right oblique strain. ... Cincinnati RHPs Alfredo Simon (right trapezius) started a rehab assignment Sunday night for Triple-A Louisville, pitching an inning and allowing a run on three hits with a strikeout. ... Reds RHP A.J. Morris (strained right shoulder) also pitched in that game, permitting three hits and three runs in two-thirds of an inning with a strikeout.