Izzy Is Or Izzy Ain’t

You know my opinion of Jason Isringhausen. Either he’s on and doing his job or, too often for my taste, he’s off and giving away games. He makes the pessimist in me want to beat the snot out of my inner optimist. That being said, this entry may come as a bit of a surprise, if not a breath of fresh air.

I want to personally thank Jason Isringhausen for being on his game today.

You heard me. I said I want to give credit where credit is due, and today it belongs to Jason Isringhausen.

I give him the business a lot because, well, this season (even more so than seasons past) his efforts have been a little suspect, in my opinion. But others have had continued faith in him, even when I have not. And today he performed up to the level that all parties want to see him reach on a regular basis.

And what a day to do it on! Today’s starter Jason Marquis struggled through the early innings of his outing, hitting three batters and giving away a run (the Astros only run of the game) that he allowed wholly on his own. And for the longest time it seemed that Houston was only going to need the one run in order to take a win from our Cardinals.

But thankfully, and somewhat inexplicably, the Astros management relieved their ace Roy Oswalt of his duties in the sixth inning. (Are they crazy?!) Their mistake. As has been our MO in games past, a different face on the mound was all we needed to jump start our bats. It didn’t matter who it was going to be, it just needed to be someone other than Oswalt. (Man, we can never hit him!)

And, so, as would be expected, we put runners on the bases as quickly as we could to set up Albert Pujols’ 25th homer of the season: a three run job over the left field wall. Which brings us to Izzy in the ninth inning with a two run lead. Not only did he save the game (Marquis earned the W) but he actually mustered the presence to get four (!!!) outs. (A fly foul ball down the right field line fell out of Juan Encarnacion’s glove. It would have been out #2 had he held on to it.)

So, on behalf of Jason Marquis, myself, and Cardinals fans everywhere, I’d like to extend long overdue accolades (as much Izzy’s fault as it is mine) and a mighty mighty Thank You.

Thank you, Izzy. We needed you today and you came through with flying colors.

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