Unlike in their previous series against the Pirates, the Cardinals on Monday played like they had something to prove... And spanked the Rockies in front of just shy of 40,000 folks at Busch Stadium.
Allen Craig hit a pair of homers and ended the game on a diving defensive play at first base while former Rockies outfielder Matt Holliday added a homer of his own to push the Birds to a 9-3 victory.
While the Cardinals offense was putting runs on the board, starting pitcher Kyle Lohse was keeping Colorado's quiet.
Lohse hurled 7 1/3 innings, scattering nine hits and a pair of walks while allowing only two runs to earn his eighth win of the season. His only bad frame came in the fourth when the Rockies tallied twice to tie the game at the time.
Lohse narrowly wiggled out of trouble in the fifth when he found himself in a bases loaded with two outs situation.
With a runner on second and two gone, Daniel Descalso was able to knock down a hard hit ball at second base but unable to make the play at first to end the inning. The effort kept the score tied but put runners at the corners and Colorado's best hitter at the plate. Lohse walked Carlos Gonzales to fill the bases and ended up filling the count to Michael Cuddyer. But, on the most important pitch of the game, Loshe coaxed a pop up to centefielder Jon Jay to end the threat.
After that, Lohse seemed to regain his balance and worked deep into the game.
The Redbirds regained the lead in the bottom of the fifth inning when Jay walked and Holliday singled him to third. Carlos Beltran hit into a fielder's choice to force out Holliday but hustled to first to prevent the double play as Jay scored to put St. Louis ahead 3-2. Craig then hit his second homer of the game to make Beltran's run count and give the Birds a 5-2 advantage.
Runs in the sixth and seventh put the game out of reach for the Cardinals, although the Rockies were able to score a run on a solo homer in the top of the ninth.
Cardinals Star of the Game: Craig had two homers in four at-bats with two runs scored, three driven in and a walk.
Cardinals Play of the Game: Craig's fifth inning homer.
Lowlight: No complaints.