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Hannibal Courier - Post - Hannibal, MO
  • Bullpen fails Cardinals in 12th as Yankees win 6-4

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  • Facing the Yankees at Busch Stadium III for the first time since the new stadium opened, the St. Louis Cardinals came up short, falling to New York 6-4 in 12 innings on Memorial Day Monday.
    Walks did the the Cardinals in.
    “It seems like the leadoff walks, in the first and the fifth (innings)” Cardinals’ skipper Mike Matheny said, “then we obviously see at them end of the ball game  too, but they all hurt us. If you give a good team extra bases and extra outs, it is going to come back and bite us.”
    Randy Choate (0-2) walked Jacoby Ellsbury to open the 12th. After Ellsbury stole second, Brian McCann was hit by a pitch. Yangervis Solarte then laid down a sac bunt that advanced the runners each 90 feet before an intentional walk to Ichiro Suzuki loaded the bases. Brian Roberts then singled to break the tie while keeping the bases loaded for pinch hitter Alfonso Soriano.
    “I was trying to throw a two-seamer away,” Choate said. “I missed. It got the barrell of his bat so he pulls it. A lot of righty’s, when they do get that hit off me in that hole, then it is usuallythat they have hit it pretty good. You can’t play what ifs.”
    Jason Motte took over on the mound and got Soriano to fly out to right field, but McCann was able to score on the play, giving the Yankees a two-run lead. The Yankees added another run when Brendan Ryan singled to left, scoring Suzuki from second.
     The Cardinals got a run back in the bottom of the 12, but it wasn’t of much help since the Redbirds trailed by three.
    Jhonny Peralta reached on an error and following a strike out, he scored on Jon Jay’s double to left. Jay moved to third on Matt Carpenter’s ground out, but was left stranded when Wong struck out to end the game.
    “We left a lot of guys on base,” Matheny said. “We did have some chances and some near successes.”
    New York (27-23) scored first. Following a walk to Gardner, Derek Jeter singled up the middle in his first regular season at bat at Busch Stadium III. Ellsbury then singled to drive in Gardner.
    Eight pitches into the bottom of the first inning, the Cardinals had tied the Yankees at 1-1.
    Matt Carpenter got the Cardinals’ offense started with a triple off the right field wall on the second pitch he saw. Six pitches later, Kolten Wong plated Carpenter with a double to roughly the same spot.
    Cardinals’ starter Michael Wacha retired 11 straight before walking Ichiro Suzuki to open the fifth. Like the first inning, that leadoff walk came back to haunt Wacha as singles by Roberts and Kelly Johnson scored Suzuki and gave the Yankees a 2-1 lead. Gardner then hit a sac-fly to left that scored Roberts, increasing the Yankees lead by another run.
    Page 2 of 3 - The Cardinals (28-23) would respond in the bottom of the 6th. Matt Holliday doubled off the left center field wall and moved to third on Matt Adams’ single. After Yadier Molina was hit by a pitch, the Yankees removed their starting pitcher.
    With the bases loaded and no outs, Allen Craig grounded to short. Holliday scored on the play while Adams moved to third as Craig beat out the throw to avoid a double play. Jhonny Peralta tied the game at 3-3 when he flew out to right field, allowing Adams to score on the sac-fly.
    Wacha, making his 11th start of the season, has had seven of his games influenced by rain. Four of his starts, including Monday’s, have been delayed from starting on time by a total of 4 hours and 52 minutes. Monday’s delay was one hour and one minute.
    “He has been in that situation before,” Matheny said. “He has pitched in the rain and he can get outs. It is just one of those things you have to try to put away in the back of your mind.”
    For the day, Wacha worked seven innings. He allowed three runs on four hits and a pair of walks, both of whom scored. Wacha struck out two.
    “I gave up too many runs,” Wacha said. “I was pretty efficient out there, but I got in trouble with the two leadoff walks. They ended up scoring like they most of the time do. I was pretty upset about that.”
    Carlos Martinez relieved Wacha to start the eighth. After a fly out, he gave up a single to Gardner. Following several pickoff attempts, Molina gunned down Gardner trying to steal second. Martinez then struck out Jeter looking to end the inning. After the caught stealing and the strikeout of Jeter, the crowd erupted in loud cheers that rocked Busch Stadium.
    The strike out of Jeter was the start of Cardinals’ relievers retiring 10 straight Yankees’ hitters before things fell apart in the top of the 12th inning.
    With the heart of the order up in the bottom of the 11th, Holliday was hit by a pitch. Following Adam’s fly out to right, Molina hammered a pitch to left field that would have been a walkoff two-run homer, but Gardner stepped in, timed the play just right and pulled the ball back to rob the Cardinals’ catcher.
    “I was sure hoping it was (a home run),” Matheny said. “He hit it well. I haven’t seen the replay, but it looked like if it wasn’t caught, it was either off the top of the wall or gone. That would have been nice.”
    Page 3 of 3 - Craig thought Molina was going to clear the fence for a game-winner.
    “I thought it had a really good shot,” Craig said. “It had some good trajectory and it was close.”
    The Cardinals outhit the Yankees 10-7 and stranded seven runners on base.
    “We did leave some guys out there,” Craig said. “I thought we hit the ball good, we just couldn’t get the big hit to push us through.”
    Tonight the Cardinals will throw Lance Lynn (5-2) in the second game of the three-game series. The Yankees will counter with David Phelps (1-1). Game time is set for 7:15 p.m.
    NOTES: Derek Jeter has collected at least one base hit in every active major league stadium following his first inning single Monday. Overall, he has hit safely in 41 active and retired stadiums as well as collecting a base hit at the Tokyo Dome. … The Cardinals had a sellout crowd of 47,311 Monday, the 11th sellout of the season. It was also the third largest crowd in Busch Stadium III history. … Former Cardinals’ slugger Carlos Beltran made his first visit back to Busch Stadium after signing with the Yankees in the off season, however he is on the disabled list and will not see any action. … The Cardinals fall to 2-4 in extra inning games this season while the Yankees improve to 4-1. All six of the Cardinals’ extra inning games have come at Busch Stadium.

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