Once again the Cardinals used the long ball as their offensive weapon of choice to gain a victory.
But this time they were fewer and farther between as the Birds downed Cincinnati 3-1 to win their second consecutive series against a fellow NL Central contender.
The Cardinals scored a run in the first on a Carlos Beltran solo homer and clinged to a one-run lead for half the game in the Reds' cozy ballpark. They had numerous chances early to extend the lead but couldn't cash in"
-They loaded the bases with one out in the first and brought Yadi Molina to the plate. Reds fans booed lustily and it would have been nice to see Molina put the game out of reach in the first with a poke over the wall. But he grounded to third base where former Redbird Scott Rolen was able to field the ball, step on the bag and then throw Yadi out at first to end the threat.
- In the second, Daniel Descalso led off with a single and was stranded at first when Tyler Greene flied out and then Kyle Lohse hit into a double play.
- In the fifth, Greene rifled a ball off the left field wall for a double to lead off the inning. But Lohse failed to move him to third base with a pop out while attempting to sacrifice bunt. Jon Jay smacked a ball to deep left that hung up and was caught. Instead of pushing the runner home as a sacrifice fly, it turned into an unproductive out. The frame ended in disappointment when Beltran struck out.
But they finally broke the game open in the sixth when Lance Berkman hit a triple to right field to lead off the inning and David Freese blasted a home run to the opposite field to make the score 3-0. I imagine that Berkman wishes Freese would have told him that he was going to hit a homer so the big Puma didn't have to run quite so far or so hard.
The Reds mustered one run on a Joey Votto sacrifice fly in the bottom of the sixth. But they could never mount much of a rally as Kyle Lohse secured his second win of the season in as many starts. Mitchell Boggs pitched two strong innings of relief and Jason Motte nailed down the save to push the St. Louis nine's record to 5-1.
Cardinals Star of the Game: David Freese was 2-for-3 with a homer, a run scored and two driven in.
Cardinals Play of the Game: Freese's sixth inning homer.
Lowlight: Yadi Molina came to the plate with five runners on base and on both occasions hit into double plays to kill rallies.