I saw the road game today as the Cardinals split their squad between a home makeup game against the Red Sox and a trip to Kissimmee to play the Astros.
Kyle Lohse got the start and was OK. The most excitement of his appearance came when he tool a liner up the middle off of his body that looked startlingly familiar to the shot off the forearm that pretty much ruined his 2009. He threw five innings, allowed eight hits and three earned runs, which wasn't bad on a day with 15 or 20 mile an hour gusts toward centerfield.
The true excitement on the mound came from fifth starter candidate Jaime Garcia who came into the game in the sixth inning and threw four innings allowing one earned run. He was a groundball machine that put away a game that seemed certain to slip away as the Astros whittled a five-run lead to four then two then one.
Ryan Ludwick and David Freese paced the offense. They were each 2-for-4 while Freese drove in three on a deep homer to left center and Ludwick drove in a pair. Joe Mather drove in an insurance run in the top of the ninth with a solo homer. Tyler Green was 2-for-5 with a run scored.
Wandy Rodriguez started the game for the Astros and was terrible in the first inning with five runs allowed. But he settled down after that and threw three shutout frames.