Springfield, MO - The Springfield Cardinals got the game-tying run as close as third base in the bottom of the ninth, but the Tulsa Drillers hung on for the 2-1 win before the sellout crowd of 7,153 fans at Hammons Field. It marked the third straight sellout crowd and 12th overall this season.
Cardinals LHP Tim Cooney (L, 7-10) shined in his final start of the season, alternating scoreless innings with a trio of Drillers to keep it a scoreless tie through the first seven innings. Cooney ended up going eight frames, striking out eight batters and surrendering only one earned run (two overall). He'll finish the season with a 3.80 ERA in his first Double-A campaign.
Tulsa (33-36, 67-70) countered on the mound with RHP Eddie Butler for the first three frames, followed by RHP Leuris Gomez (W, 5-1) for three and RHP Joe Gardner for two, each of whom navigated through their innings in scoreless fashion.
Tulsa cracked the scoreboard first in the top of the eighth inning. RF Tyler Kuhn sparked the Drillers bats with a leadoff double, before coming home on an RBI single chopped through the middle of the infield by 3B Tim Smalling. CF Starlin Rodriguez had a momentary bobble when fielding the base hit, enabling Smalling to take second base on the play. After a fly out advanced Smalling to third base, he came in on an RBI base hit from CF Delta Cleary, Jr. to stretch the advantage to 2-0.
The Cardinals (31-38, 64-73) countered in the bottom of the ninth inning against RHP Cole White (S, 19). 3B Ruben Gotay worked a walk to start the inning with a baserunner, before darting to second on a wild pitch. After a groundout advanced Gotay to third, he came in on an RBI sacrifice fly to center field by RF Stephen Piscotty, bringing Springfield within just one run, 2-1. White then hit consecutive batters, putting LF Adam Melker and Rodriguez on with two down. They completed a double steal to take third and second base, but White induced a game-ending groundout off the bat of 2B Matt Williams, closing the narrow 2-1 win for Tulsa.
Click here for the complete box score from Sunday's game.
The Cardinals wrap up the 2013 Regular Season on Monday with a 12:09pm First Pitch. Monday will feature the Home White Jersey Auction to benefit the Cardinals Youth Initiative, presented by the Hamels Foundation. The Home White Jerseys feature two special commemorative patches - the 2012 Texas League Championship Patch and the Stan Musial #6 Patch. The Labor Day ballgame is Fan Appreciation Day, with all fans in attendance receiving a free ticket voucher for a 2014 game.
For information about becoming a Season Ticket Holder, organizing a Group Outing, booking a Cake Pop Company Birthday Party or ordering Individual Game Tickets right now, call the Front Office at (417) 863-2143 or visit SpringfieldCardinals.com.
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