Tampa Bay, St. Louis make playoffs on season's final day
- The Rays pour out of the dugout after Evan Longoria's walk-off homerun, which sent Tampa Bay to the playoffs. (Photo: Associated Press)
Meanwhile, Chris Carpenter and the Cardinals completed one of the more remarkable comebacks in baseball history, clinching the NL wild card Wednesday night with an 8-0 win over Houston and a later loss by Atlanta.
Carpenter (11-9) struck out 11 and allowed two hits in his 15th career complete-game shutout as St. Louis kept up its improbable September charge. The Cardinals won for the 23rd time in 31 games, having trailed Atlanta by 10½ games on Aug. 25.
The Cardinals poured onto the field after Carpenter fielded J.D. Martinez's weak grounder for the final out.
In Atlanta, with the season on the line, the Atlanta Braves couldn't get the final three outs.
Now, they'll have the whole winter to ponder an unprecedented collapse.
Braves closer Craig Kimbrel surrendered the tying run in the ninth, and Hunter Pence came through with a two-out, run-scoring single in the 13th to give the Philadelphia Phillies a 4-3 victory that ended the Braves season Wednesday night without a trip to the playoffs that looked like a certainty just a few weeks ago.
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