If you're a baseball fan, you live for stuff like this. Forget about it being Tuesday night. Forget about the fact that whoever wins this game is going to limp into the NLDS against the Brewers like a gaggle of zombies. The only thing that matters is this: the MLB Postseason has officially begun, and the first game in the books was freaking catnip for the feverish faithful.
In a hard fought National League Wild Card Game that found both teams living on the razor's edge, reserve catcher Tony Wolters -- of all people! -- delivered the decisive blow with a 13th-inning RBI single. When the dust settled, Colorado had won 2-1 at Wrigley Field.
As soon as Rockies manager Bud Black gave dazzling starter Kyle Freeland the hook with two outs in the seventh, the Cubs started to show life. With two out in the eighth, pinch runner Terrance Gore stood in for Anthony Rizzo following a clutch single, immediately swiping second base without a play. What followed was a gritty at bat from superstar Javier Baez, who served up an RBI double to tie the game.
Tony Wolters had one extra-inning RBI hit in his career before this. It came in his 18th game in the big leagues. May 7, 2016 in Sanf Francisco. The Rockies wound up losing that game anyway - in the bottom of the 13th.— Jayson Stark (@jaysonst) October 3, 2018
A steely war of inches raged on afterward, with both teams having to pitch their way out of jams. Baez even hugged Arenado on the base paths during a bizarre force play, as if this game hadn't been tech-gnashing enough.
But in the end, it was Wolters who ultimately made sure that Rocktober would indeed be popping off and rolling all the way to the NLDS in Milwaukee.
Where do we even go from here, folks?
Oh, that's right. The NLDS begins Thursday.
That's plenty of time to get all of the popcorn ready.