Jeff Samardzija entered the game Monday night against the Cardinals with an 18.90 ERA for the season.
He left it with a victory to his credit.
That about says it all for the 2010 Cardinals.
Despite having one of their big three starters on the hill and having the motivation of knowing they don't have any more games on the schedule that they could afford to lose, the Redbirds went out and did just that.
They turned in another nothing offensive performance against a pitcher who couldn't even find the strike zone. On three occassions the Cardinals had two or more runners on base -- and each time one of their middle of the order hitters hit a lazy fly ball to the warning track. The most frustrating time occured when Samardzija walked the bases loaded -- in his limited innings this season he'd walked 10 while striking out only three -- and Colby Rasmus hacked away at a 1-0 pitch that appeared to be out of the strike zone.
Jaime Garcia, who started the game for St. Louis, allowed seven hits in six innings. He threw a pair of shut out innings, got touched for two runs each in the second and third innings, then threw three more scoreless frames. But he didn't get any support from the offense whatsoever.
The Cardinals lone run came when Randy Winn hit a ground rule double and then Matt Holliday drove him in. But it was far too little, too late.
Cardinals Star of the Game: Holliday was 2-for-4 with the Birds' lone RBI
Cardinals Play of the Game: N/A
Lowlight: Getting shut down by a pitcher who won his first game of the season on Sept. 13.