The Cardinals took down the Mets, 5-4, in a very dramatic game with implications on the NL wild-card race in New York on Wednesday night. A Yoenis Cespedes home run put the Mets up 4-3 in the seventh, and then All-Star closer Jeurys Familia was summoned in the ninth inning. He had closed down 52 consecutive save chances.
This time around, the Cardinals got to him. Yadier Molina came through with the clutch double to tie things up and break the save streak, but the Cardinals didn't stop there. Kolten Wong would also double, giving the Cardinals the lead for good.
The Cardinals would hold on for the win, jumping over the Mets and remaining one game back of the Marlins for the second wild card -- and, oh by the way, the Cardinals head to Miami for a four-game series with the Marlins beginning on Thursday.
Still, the headline here is Familia's save streak being broken.
This marked the first time in nearly a year that Familia blew a save. His last was July 30 of last season.
So the streak of 52 straight saves is done. Familia got close to the second-longest streak ever (Tom Gordon, 54), but not even in the ballpark of the longest.
Eric Gagne converted 84 straight in 2002-04. That's outrageous. The leaderboard goes 84 to 54 to 52.
It's true that saves are a fairly new incarnation in baseball. The modern save is also much different than the way that greats like Goose Gossage, Rollie Fingers and Bruce Sutter were employed.
Still, between all-timers Mariano Rivera and Trevor Hoffman, long-time stalwarts like Billy Wagner and Joe Nathan, uber-talented studs like Craig Kimbrel and Aroldis Chapman and the sheer dominance from Wade Davis the past few years, it's pretty shocking that Gagne still has such a gigantic lead.
From where I sit, that's my biggest takeaway of the Familia streak coming to an end. It illustrates just how absurd Gagne's streak was.