Rasmus’ homer gives Cardinals 2-1 win over Giants
July 1, 2009
ST. LOUIS – Colby Rasmus hit a leadoff homer in the 10th inning after rookie third baseman Pablo Sandoval dropped his foul pop fly earlier in the at-bat, giving the St. Louis Cardinals a 2-1 victory over the San Francisco Giants on Wednesday night.
Sandoval circled the rookie’s foul ball off a 2-2 count against Bob Howry (0-4), arriving late and missing with what appeared to be a casual stab with his glove. Three pitches later, Rasmus homered to straightaway center for his first game-ending hit.
Albert Pujols, who was in the on-deck circle when Rasmus connected, was 2 for 2 after drawing intentional walks with a man on second his first two at-bats. His 26 intentional walks are more than double any other player.
Adam Wainwright had a career-best 12 strikeouts in nine innings for St. Louis, allowing a run and six hits. He has worked six or more innings in 15 consecutive starts. Ryan Franklin (2-0) pitched a perfect 10th for the win.
Rasmus leads NL rookies with eight homers and 29 RBIs. He also singled in the fifth in his first game back after missing two starts due to a hernia.
Ryan Ludwick, a first-time All-Star last year mired in a first-half slump, drove in his first run in eight games in the first inning. The Cardinals have won only two of eight, scoring three or fewer runs in seven of those games.
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Matt Cain allowed a run in seven innings for the Giants, who committed two errors after going 10 games without a miscue.
San Francisco didn’t get a runner in scoring position against Wainwright until the eighth when it loaded the bases with none out on pinch-hitter Fred Lewis’ double, an infield hit by Aaron Rowand and a walk to Randy Winn. Bengie Molina tied it at 1 with his major league-leading ninth sacrifice fly with one out before Wainwright ended the threat by striking out Nate Schierholtz.
Wainwright finished with a flourish. Edgar Renteria hit a leadoff single in the ninth and stole second as Travis Ishikawa struck out for the third time. Wainwright then struck out Juan Uribe for the third time and Lewis to end the inning.
Cain worked seven or more innings for the fourth straight start, getting out of trouble in the first, third and fifth.
The Cardinals failed to capitalize on shortstop Renteria’s gaffe in the eighth. Renteria threw late to second on a force attempt rather than throw to first for an easy out on slow-footed Yadier Molina’s grounder, loading the bases with two outs, but Sergio Romo struck out Joe Thurston.
Giants outfielders robbed Skip Schumaker of a pair of hits, with Rowand making a sliding catch in center in the third and Winn making a similar catch in the fifth.
NOTES: Wainwright’s strikeout total is the Cardinals’ best for a nine-inning game since Chris Carpenter fanned 13 on June 13, 2006, at Pittsburgh. … Injured Mark DeRosa is 0 for 9 in three games with the Cardinals and 2 for 27 with one RBI since June 20. … Pujols is 5 for 9 with a homer, four RBIs and three walks against Cain.