In his last at bat in front of the home crowd Wednesday Matt Holliday was booed for striking out. But what a difference a new day can make.
Holliday was three-for-four Friday with a line drive homer to centerfield and three RBI's to earn hearty cheers from the Busch Stadium faithful. He raised his batting average to .292 with what seemed like a much more controlled swing than what he had earlier in the season.
Although Holliday's first inning homer put the Cardinals on top in the first, it wasn't an easy game. Starting pitcher Chris Carpenter, who was brilliant in his last two starts but couldn't get any run support from the offense, was shaky with four runs allowed in the second. But the batsmen were able to turn the tables and bail their ace out when he didn't have his best stuff. They battled back to tie the game at four runs in the fifth inning. Then the Birds scored a pair of runs in the bottom of the seventh to give Carpenter the victory in a 6-4 St. Louis win.
Cardinals left fielder Matt Holliday flips his bat after hitting a first inning home run Friday against the Athletics. AP photo.
Holliday also figured in the Cardinals' second rally of the game, driving hme Brendan Ryan in the fifth to cut the deficit to 4-3. Albert Pujols, who was 1-for-2 on the night with a pair of walks, drove in Skip Schumaker with a ball right back up the middle to knot the game at four.
Schumaker, who also went 3-for-4 to raise his batting average to .249 while scoring three runs -- one in each of the three Cardinals rallies.
Ryan Franklin pitched a flawless ninth inning, retiring the A's in order on only 11 pitches.
Cardinals Star of the Game: Holliday.
Cardinals Play of the Game: Schumaker's ground rule double in the seventh to give the Redbirds the lead for good.
Lowlight: Colby Rasmus, David Freese and Yadier Molina, batting in the fifth, sixth and seventh spots in the order, went 0-for-11 with four strikeouts.
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