Cheap Seats

April 10: Cardinals 6, Giants 1

Welcome back Matt Holliday.

The Cardinals slugging left fielder played his first game Sunday in nine days following a bout of apendicitis. His three times on base with a run scored and a run driven in apparently inspired the lower part of the batting order and the Birds enjoyed a rare offensive outburst.

Third baseman David Freese was 3-for-4 with a home run, two runs scored and three runs driven in for the game while Skip Schumaker collected two hits in four at bats with two RBIs to help the Redbirds salvage a game in San Francisco with a 6-1 win.

Kyle Lohse continued the Cardinals' stretch of good starting pitching with an eight inning performance in which he allowed five hits and one run. He walked none and struck out five.

St. Louis got behind early when the Giants notched a first inning run. But Lohse held firm with no margin for error. The Birds tied the game in the second when Allen Craig, playing right field in place of Lance Berkman, doubled with one out and then Freese singled him home. It would remain that way until the top of the sixth inning as Lohse match San Francisco starter Barry Zito zero for zero.

Albert Pujols, who was hitless in five at bats including another rally killing double play ball, grounded out to start the sixth. But Holliday got things started with a walk and then Craig drew another free pass. Frieze doubled to give the Cardinals a 2-1 lead then Schumaker ripped a two bagger -- off the glove of San Francisco centerfielder Aaron Rowand in deep left center -- to score Craig and Freese.

Holliday drove in Colby Rasmus for an insurance run in the seventh, then Freese hit a solo homer in the eighth to put things out of reach and bring home the Redbirds win.

Cardinals Star of the Game: David Freese

Cardinals Play of the Game: Freese's double

Lowlight: Pujols' 0-for-5 day dropped his batting average to .143 for the season.