Cheap Seats

Cardinals at Padres, Aug. 20

The Cardinals didn't have a problem driving in runs with the bases loaded Thursday. Brendan Ryan hit a grand slam in the second to give the Cardinals a lead and Joel Pineiro cruised with the cushion beneath him. Ryan had four career long balls before Thursday, all solo shots.

It was all the Redbirds, needed, although Matt Holliday later tripled and scored on a ground out to reach the game's final score: 5-1 in favor of St. Louis.

The red hot redbirds added to their lead when the Dodgers knocked off the Cubs. The Wee Bears now stand seven games back in the dust.

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Brendan Ryan hits his first grand slam in the majors Thursday against the Padres. AP photo.

The Cardinals could have had several more runs if not for the play of new Padres centerfielder Tony Gwynn, Jr. He may not hit like his father, but the younger Gwynn sure covers a lot of ground in the outfield.

Trever Miller didn't appear Wednesday against the Dodgers to start the ninth inning because he had pitched in nine of the Cardinals previous 10 games, the Fox Sports broadcasting team mentioned Thursday night. Dennys Reyes came in instead and hit the only man he faced with the only pitch he threw. Manager Tony La Russa said he wanted to get Miller some rest... He appeared Thursday in the ninth inning to help hammer down the St. Louis win.

In the latest edition of the Yahoo Sports baseball power rankings, the Redbirds have jumped from 10th place all the way up to fourth, which is good enough for second to the Phillies in the National League. Click here to see the complete rankings. You may notice that the Cubs have fallen all the way to 16th.

View From the Cheap Seats Cardinals Star of the Game: Pineiro threw 7 2/3 innings, allowing four hits and a run while striking out seven to improve to 12-9.

Lowlight: While he found a way to help the Cardinals win Wednesday, Albert Pujols seems to be slumping again. He wore the collar Thursday and has struck out several times in the last few days... And that is not very Pujols-like.