Granted, 6-3 is a nice start. But it's a little bit frustrating that the Cardinals haven't been able to finish off a sweep after being spotted a 2-0 series lead three times so far in this young season.
But it's REALLY frustrating how the Redbirds make Bud Norris look like Roy Halladay every time they face him.
Norris completely owned the Birds during the Thursday businessman's special... And that includes Albert Pujols whom he struck out twice.
To add insult to injury, Norris notched the first RBI of his career in the third inning to stake the Astros to a 1-0 lead that was expanded to 2-0 later in the inning. Kyle Lohse, who had a pretty decent start (7IP, 5H, 0BB, 1K), had a chance to do some damage on the bases after he doubled in the third inning. But When Ryan Ludwick singled to center he inexplicably stopped at third base and, with his hands on his knees looking at the ground while he caught his breath, remained there even though Houston centerfielder Michael Born lost the handle on the ball.
Ryan Ludwick (42), Felipe Lopez (42) and Kyle Lohse (42) head into the dugout after the top of the first inning Thursday. All the players, coaches and umpires in Major League Baseball wore number 42 in memory of Jackie Robinson. AP photo.
For a long while, it looked like the base running gaffe could have been the difference in the game. But Mitchell Boggs put that debate to rest in the eighth inning when he came in and allowed three runs to let the Astros bust open the game 5-1.
Houston improved to 1-8 on the season with the victory. Hopefully the Cardinals started the 'Stros on a winning streak because they play their next three against the Cubs.
Cardinals Star of the Game:David Freese was 2-for-4 with the Birds' only RBI. He raised his batting average from .261 to .308.
Cardinals Play of the Game: Not much to choose from, so I'll pick a play on which the Cardinals batsman made an out... In the ninth inning, catching prospect Bryan Anderson made his major league debut by smoking a line drive to right. Unfortunately, he hit it right to Hunter Pence.
Lowlight:Matt Holliday went 0-for-4 Thursday to remain hitless at Busch Stadium through the first home series. He's 0-11 in St. Louis and 11-for-26 on the road.