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Game Hero, WPA, 43 - 43

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Lance Berkman
  • 0 for 1, 2 Walks, 1 run
  • Two outstanding defensive plays:
  • Lance goes Ichiro on Rolen in the second
  • And he makes things a lot easier for Qualls in the seventh, making Edmonds pay for trying to take the extra base
  • Didn't hurt that the Cardinals were afraid to pitch to him, either

A day after Berkman nails Michael Barrett at third in one of the prettiest, ballsiest defensive plays of the year, Lance cranks the defense up another two notches, and changes the game all by his lonesome, and never mind that he never had a hit.

"All I can do is keep making plays," Berkman was quoted in in the story I read over at CBS Sportsline. "I'm not sitting up nights thinking, 'I hope somebody thinks I can play defense."

Well that's good, Lance, because most people spend their time calling you "a natural hitter," or "something of a flake," and the fact that you made the greatest catch in the history of Tal's Hill (and never mind Carlos Beltran or Willy Taveras) has been forgotten. Even us fans tend to underrate your defense.

A lot of us get an attack of the heebie-jeebies whenever we contemplate Berkman playing right, but as Lance showed tonight, that's more 'cause we're worried about his long-term health, and has nothing to do with his ability to play the position.

Win Expectancy Chart

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Top Five Astros
Wilson   0.240
Lidge    0.194
Berkman   0.145
Qualls   0.097
Lamb   0.079
Bottom Four Astros
Palmeiro -0.041
Munson -0.041
Ensberg -0.069
Biggio -0.090
Top Three Cardinals
Rodriguez   0.144
Kinney   0.114
Pujols   0.068