ST. LOUIS - A couple of weeks ago, when Luke Voit made his Major League debut with the St. Louis Cardinals, the hometown kid shared how Mark McGwire was his favorite player growing up. Voit would mimic the slugger right down to the twirl of his bat while waiting for a pitch.
In today’s 4-3 victory over Miami, Voit did more than twirl the bat–he launched his first homerun deep into Big Mac Land.
“Yeah, another ‘wow’ moment,” said Voit. “It was one of those I could watch it–especially when it landed there, I was just like wow. It’s something I grew up wanting to do my whole life. Here, it’s pretty sweet man. Definitely going to remember that forever.”
His second career homerun, the blast measured at 446 feet.
“That’s probably one of the farthest homeruns I’ve ever hit,” said Voit. “It just felt like effort-less coming off my bat. It’s an amazing feeling.”
“That ball was hammered,” said Mike Matheny. “The thing about it is, it didn’t look like he tried to generate extra power. It was just his normal swing.”
The homeruns and doubles will make the highlight reel, but Voit has been putting together good at-bats more often than not.
His catchphrase may be “Bombs and Doubles”, but we have seen an approach that regularly works deep into counts.
“That comes from our hitting coaches and our veteran players that I’m playing with,” credited Voit. “Just kind of tell me what they do or what I’m seeing up there and what I need to do against these guys, how they’re going to attack me–because they’re going to attack me kind of how they attack Jedd and how they’re going to attack Grichuk. Their at-bats are my at-bats too. So I’m kind of watching theirs and seeing how they’re getting pitched to. I’m just trying to battle my butt off.”
The Cardinals rookie now has 7 runs batted in for the month of July, tied for tops on the team with Tommy Pham.
5-6-4 DOUBLE PLAY
–Leading by a run in the 8th inning, the Cardinals made a key defensive play in preserving their victory. The first two hitters for Miami reached base and then A.J. Ellis dropped down a bunt.
The ball was fielded by Jedd Gyorko, who fired to Alex Mejia covering third, and he then threw a strike across the field to Greg Garcia, who was covering first.
The play went just as the Cardinals had drawn things up, 5-6-4 from third to first to complete the double play.
“That’s actually what that play is for,” explained Matheny. “You’re committing both corners in and trying to–throwing your chips in. If it bunts a little bit hard, you have an opportunity to maybe get the lead run at least. It’s a bonus having the double play for sure. Well-executed. You’re talking about guys that haven’t necessarily run that play with us in Mejia.”
“I think the consistency through the organization is so important. When we do our plays in Spring Training, we had Stubby Clapp with us the whole time and explaining here’s kind of the thought process, here’s the timing, this is how we’re going to work on it. So when these guys get here, it’s important–the signs are the same, whoever is starting the play the timing is the same, and you could tell that these guys have done a nice job continuing what we started in the spring.”
- Michael Wacha struck out 9 batters for the second consecutive game.
- Randal Grichuk hit a 423 foot homerun, his 8th of the season.
- Seung Hwan Oh delivered his first save since June 21st at Philadelphia.
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