the internet polls about to close on the vote for the 34th and final berth on
the All-Star Game squads in both leagues, National League leader David Freese
made his final plea Wednesday night.
Freese, the Most Valuable Player in
the NL Championship Series and the World Series last year, stroked a
bases-loaded single on an 0-2 count to provide the insurance runs in a 4-1 win
over Colorado and run his RBI total to an impressive 50 one game into the second
half of the season.
Left fielder Matt Holliday, the
hottest hitter in the game, probably won't be on the NL squad unless there are a
couple of injuries but he had three more hits -- a double and two singles. He is
a scalding 33 for his last 64 since June 16 and has jumped his average to
"I'm not missing good pitches to hit,"
said Holliday. "Sometimes when you're struggling, you hit over the top of the
ball and you foul them back. Now I'm doing a decent job of hitting the ball
Manager Mike Matheny said, "He
certainly looks like a different hitter."
Holliday also helped save a run in the
first by making a sliding stop in the outfield although he later let a ball get
by him for a triple that helped to account for the Rockies' lone
None of the Cardinals' pitchers who
worked Wednesday will be on the All-Star club but they all pitched at a high
Right-hander Adam Wainwright, whose
earned run average against Colorado already was well under 2.00, held the Rockies to one run in six innings. He allowed eight hits
but just and one walk and fanned seven.
The bigger news was the work of the
bullpen. Right-hander Maikel Cleto, just recalled from Class AAA Memphis, fanned
the first two men he faced in the seventh and then benefited from a dazzling,
over-the-shoulder catch by center fielder Jon Jay, who reached high to make the
Left-hander Marc Rzepcznski, who has
been erratic all season, went through three left-handed batters in the
eighth, fanning left fielder Carlos Gonzalez and right fielder Tyler Colvin.
Jason Motte got his 18th save in 22 tries, also fanning two in the ninth.
Cardinals pitchers struck out 13 for the night.
The much-discussed bullpen has fanned
19 and walked only one in the last five games.
"We've been talking all season about
working ahead in the count," Matheny said. "We've been talking about Cleto
getting tougher assignments. And I don't think Zep's had a tougher one, coming
in and doing what he did."
SS Rafael Furcal was the
middle man on an unusual 3-6-5 double play to end the sixth and take RHP Adam
Wainwright, the winning pitcher, out of a tough spot. With runners at first and
second and out, Colorado SS Jonathan Herrera hit a line drive to the right of
Cardinals 1B Allen Craig, who could not hold on to the ball but recovered
quickly to throw to second for the force out as the Rockies' runners froze.
Furcal, taking the throw at second, alertly looked toward third and saw
Chris Nelson trapped between second and third. Furcal threw to Cardinals 3B
David Freese, who, with the force off, tagged Nelson for the final out. "Raffy's
a veteran and he's got great instincts to assess the situation," said manager
RHP Adam Wainwright
gained his seventh win by pitching six durable innings, scattering eight hits.
"Today I made pitches with two outs and the last time I didn't. That's the
difference in a great outing and a bad one," said Wainwright. He said he helped
fight the heat by staying hydrated and eating a peanut butter and jelly sandwich
and a protein bar.
LHP Jaime Garcia, who had
been shut down with shoulder problems, threw 40 pitches from 60 feet on flat
ground for the first time in a month. "It felt really good," Garcia said. "I can
definitely tell a big difference already."
RHP Kyle McClellan (elbow
strain), who threw from flat ground for the first time the day before, reported
he felt good Wednesday. He could be back in early August.
RHP Lance Lynn will make
his last start before he goes to the All-Star Game when he faces Colorado in the finale of
the four-game series Thursday night. Lynn has given up 17 runs over 15 1/3 innings
in his last three starts, none of them wins.
20-19 - Cardinals' record
Quote to Note:
"It's a zapping kind of
heat. It takes your energy out."
- RHP Adam Wainwright on
the continued steamy weather in St.
Louis. It was 103 degrees at game time Wednesday.
LHP Jaime Garcia (left
shoulder strain) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to June 6. After
further examination, it was determined that he has tearing in his rotator cuff.
He threw 40 pitches from 60 feet on flat ground for the first time in a month
July 4. He is out until at least mid-August.
RHP Kyle McClellan
(strained right ulnar collateral ligament) went on the 15-day disabled list May
18, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on June 30. He won't need surgery
but likely will be sidelined until at least late July. He threw from flat ground
for the first time July 3 and reported he felt good July 4. He could be back in
1B Lance Berkman (torn
meniscus in right knee) went on the 15-day disabled list May 20. He had
arthroscopic surgery May 25, and no ACL damage was found. He took batting
practice July 2, and he hopes to return to the Cardinals on July
RHP Chris Carpenter (weak
right shoulder) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 26, and he
was transferred to the 60-day DL on June 10. He threw for the first time since
March on June 13 and then threw another 40 pitches on June 15. He threw to
hitters for the first time June 22 but then had a setback June 25 when he felt
renewed weakness in the shoulder. He said it felt better the next day, and he
had an extensive throwing session off flat ground June 27. On June 28, he was
told he has thoracic outlet syndrome, which can cause, among its effects,
weakness in one's shoulder. A July 2 bullpen session was canceled. On July 3,
the Cardinals announced that Carpenter will undergo season-ending surgery July
19 and will be out until February.
Link to boxscore: St. Louis 4, Colorado 1