The Cardinals are going back to the World Series for the fourth time in the last 10 seasons after blowing out the Dodgers in NLCS Game 6 on Friday night. The six-game series provided a number of highlight reel plays and just all-around awesome moments. Some were immortalized in GIF form, and that's what we're here to celebrate. Here are the five best (animated!) moments from the NLCS.
1. Who else? Yasiel Puig. In Game 3, he watched what he thought was a home run fall well short of the right field wall before hustling it into a triple (GIF via the moderately handsome Dayn Perry):
Style and speed.
2. After doubling home a run in Game 3, Adrian Gonzalez celebrated at second base and had Adam Wainwright later call it "Mickey Mouse stuff." Then, after hitting a homer in Game 5, the usually low-key Gonzalez made a set of Mickey Mouse ears on his way back to the dugout (GIF via Big League Stew):
3. The very first game of the series went to extra innings, and in the tenth inning postseason demigod Carlos Beltran made a ridiculous throw from right field to cut Mark Ellis down at the plate (GIF via The Big Lead):
Replays showed that Yadier Molina never directly applied the tag, but Ellis was ruled out anyway. Imagine how different this series could have been if the throw was just a little off-line or if Molina had bobbled it at the plate. Huge.
4. Zack Greinke is something of a magician on the mound, a throwback type who will use a ton of different pitches at a ton of different velocities. In Game 1 -- against the opposing pitcher! -- he broke out this near-eephus 69 mph curveball (GIF via @ChadMoriyama):
Van Slyke won the battle (standoff), Kelly won the war (NLCS), and home plate umpire Greg Gibson won best supporting actor.