The Cardinals scored a four-run outburst in the fourth inning Sunday against the Brewers. And then former St. Louis hurler Kyle Lohse had an outburst of his own as the Redbirds took another series win and improved to 28-15 with a 4-2 decision.
Carlos Beltran led off the fourth with a single and Allen Craig moved him to second with one out thanks to a single of his own. Yadier Molina then singled up the middle to make the score 1-0 and then Jon Jay laced a ball down the right field line to make the score 2-0 with runners at second and third. David Freese made the score 3-0 on a single to right and Jay went to third. Pete Kozma tried to squeeze another run home but the Brewers couldn't make the play and starting pitcher John Gast came to the plate with a 4-0 lead and runners on first and second with one out.
Apparently it irritated Lohse that Gast tried to move the runners up with a bunt and he threw several pitches at Gast before the St. Louis lefty bunted into a force and Lohse got Matt Carpenter to end the inning on a pop up. Loshe then made a bee line for Cardinals third base coach Jose Oquendo and then proceeded to chew him out.
Lohse came up third in the top of the fifth and apparently anticipated being retaliated against because of his antics. He didn't even raise his bat to the hitting position while the first ball was thrown by Gast. Fortunately the St. Louis rookie had the cooler head and he struck out Lohse instead of stooping to his level.
Usually I like it when pitchers stand up for their teams and themselves. But I was embarrassed for Lohse as he completely lost his composure for the next two or three innings. It's amazing that he didn't give up a bunch more runs. But the Cardinals tend to score in bunches and then try to hang on for dear life. And Sunday was no different.
Gast gave up back-to-back hits to start the sixth inning before retiring Ryan Braun on a force out -- that might have been a double play if Freese hadn't struggled to get control of the ball. And then he departed in favor of reliever Seth Maness.
Maness stuck out the first batter he faced before giving up back-to-back hits to let Milwaukee cut the lead to 4-2. He then struck out Rickie Weeks to end the inning.
In the seventh the Brewers loaded the bases against Maness before the Cardinals rookie induced Braun to hit into a double play.
Cardinals Star of the Game: Jon Jay continues to be on fire in the month of May. He had two hits in four trips to the plate and scored one run while driving in another. Jay's double was a thing of beauty as he hustled to take the extra base.
Cardinals Play of the Game: Maness' double play ball courtesy of Ryan Braun.
Lowlight: While he had the play of the game, Maness seems to have lost a bit of his magic touch. He allowed five hits in an 1 1/3 innings and had just barely enough Sunday to get the job done.