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Sunday, October 14, 2012

You didn't give up, did you? Cards fans relish the stunning comeback

You didn't give up, did you? Cards fans relish the stunning comeback

October 12, 2012 10:00 pm  • 
Could the Cardinals really do it again? Another unbelievable, improbable comeback in a playoff game? No way, right?
For those Cards fans who still believed, who didn't turn off the TV or radio and never gave up late Friday  night, the reward was crazy, shocking, exciting -- and mighty sweet.
"Total disbelief," said Rich LoRusso, owner of LoRusso's Cucina restaurant.
As many as 40 people were watching the game at his restaurant on Friday night. But by the ninth inning, most had gone home.
"If somebody tells you they didn't give up on them . . . really?" he said. "I mean, come on."
LoRusso was too busy attending to banquets and other customers to keep close eye the game. He didn't sit down in the restaurant bar until there were two outs left in the ninth inning.
Then he, along with eight employees and the remaining six customers, watched the Cardinals score four runs. He couldn't believe his eyes.
The best part? Watching the reaction of Nationals' fans as the Cardinals rounded the bases.
"I've never seen a more stoic 45,000 people," he said.
The stunning, come-from-behind win -- time for another round of "miracle" descriptions -- lit up Facebook pages and Twitter accounts. Tweets such as these came pouring onto pages as the victory was sealed:
"Wow wow wow! Is it 2011 all over again?"
"Holy wow that's all I can say!!!!!!!!!"
When St. Peter's resident Gary Van Drew, 63, saw the Cardinals were down by six runs, he figured the season was over. So he changed the channel on his television. He went to bed a little before 9 p.m.
"I was kind of depressed," Van Drew said.
A few hours later, he woke up to the sound of his iPhone buzzing with news alerts. Then he heard fireworks going off in his subdivision. He picked up his phone and saw the game's final score: Cardinals win, 9-7.
He quickly turned his TV back on to see a recap of the game, disappointed that he hadn't witnessed the comeback live.
"I'm beating myself up a little bit," Van Drew said.
Kyle Weaver, 22, of Louisville, Ky., and his sister Amber Hoertz, 29, of Rochester, N.Y., stopped by Busch Stadium this morning to take pictures. They were in town for a wedding. It was Weaver's first time visiting the stadium.
He watched Friday night's game on a hotel room TV. He struggled to keep from shouting as the comeback played out. He immediately thought back to last year's World Series.
Now, Weaver said, he's confident this Cardinals team will go all the way again. "I'd be really surprised if they aren't in the World Series," he said.
Ryan Gibbs, 34, of Jackson, Tenn., brought his family to St. Louis to visit the zoo this weekend. His wife, Shauna, and their three daughters and one son joined him outside the stadium entrance on Saturday, taking pictures by statues of Cardinals greats.
Gibbs said he, too, watched the game from a hotel room. When the Cardinals took the lead, he said. "I just started laughing."
Gibbs said he didn't give up hope. "After last year? No way," he said.
Kerry Derrington, 52, of Collinsville, had driven to Wentzville to visit his mother Friday. He decided to stop at Hot Shots in St. Charles on his way home to catch the game.
Derrington left after the third inning, went home, climbed into bed, and pulled the covers over his head. But he left the radio tuned to Mike Shannon and John Rooney.
Then, the game turned.
"I started getting up," Derrington said. "I started pacing in the house. I went to the garage. I sat in five different chairs."
The comeback wasn't better or worse than Game 6 from last year's World Series, he said. "It's an encore."
This, Derrington said, is part of why he loves baseball. It applies to life.
"You can get way down, but just keep on trying," he said. "You never know what's going to happen if you try."

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