(Tuesday, April 17th)
Final Score: St. Louis 2, Cincinnati 1 (10 innings)
St. Louis, MO (Sports Network) - Matt Carpenter drove in the game-winning run with a pinch-hit sacrifice fly in the bottom of the 10th inning as the St. Louis Cardinals edged the Cincinnati Reds, 2-1, in the opener of a three-game set at Busch Stadium.
After loading the bases in the ninth but failing to score, St. Louis loaded the bags again in the 10th when David Freese led off the frame with a walk and moved to second on a sacrifice bunt by Yadier Molina. Jon Jay was then intentionally walked and Daniel Descalso also drew a walk.
Facing Bill Bray, Carpenter battled the Reds hurler to a full count before lifting the seventh pitch of the at-bat to right field. Jay Bruce made the catch, but Tyler Greene beat the throw home to win it for the Cardinals.
Jason Motte (1-0) earned the win with a scoreless top of the 10th, while Sam LeCure (0-1) was charged with the deciding run.
Carlos Beltran cracked a home run for St. Louis, which has won three straight games.
"It's been fun," Beltran said of his time with the Cardinals. "It's been a wild ride so far and we're just looking to continue the way we've beem playing. Everybody's doing their job, so it's been fun to watch."
Zack Cozart knocked in the only run for the Reds, who have lost four of their last five.
Trailing 1-0, the Reds finally got on the board in the eighth. Ryan Hanigan reached on an error to start the frame and pinch-hitter Wilson Valdez reached on an error by St. Louis reliever Mitchell Boggs. Brandon Phillips lined into a double play, but Cozart came through with an RBI single which scored pinch- runner Devin Mesoraco to tie the game.
Descalso walked to begin the St. Louis ninth and Rafael Furcal slapped a single to right to put runners on the corners. Beltran was then given a free pass to load the bases. Logan Ondrusek battled back to retire Matt Holliday and Lance Berkman to end the threat.
The Cardinals opened the scoring in their first at-bat. Following a pop-out by Furcal, Beltran cranked a fastball from Reds starter Johnny Cueto over the wall in right field.
St. Louis put runners on second and third with two outs in the second, but failed to score as Cueto got Furcal to pop out.
The defending champs threatened again in their next at-bat, loading the bases with one out, but again Cueto worked out of trouble. He got Molina to foul out before inducing a fielder's choice groundout from Jay.
Cozart drew a leadoff walk in the fourth and Joey Votto smacked a single to left to give the Reds a pair of runners, but they could not take advantage as Cards' starter Kyle Lohse fanned Scott Rolen, Bruce and Ryan Ludwick.
The Cardinals threatened again in the home fourth when Furcal smacked a two- out single and Beltran drew a walk, but Cueto got Holliday to line out sharply to left.
"We left a lot of guys on base and we didn't execute some plays earlier," Reds manager Dusty Baker said.
Lohse tossed seven scoreless innings. He gave up four hits and one walk while striking out six...Cueto was equally as effective, giving up just one run one seven hits and two walks while fanning five over seven full frames...The Cardinals went 0-for-9 with runners in scoring position and stranded 14.
04/18 02:07:47 ET