The Cardinals' inability to execute what should have been an easy double play was the capper to a night when the offense did nothing after the first inning, when the Cardinals scored all four of their runs.
After the Pittsburgh Pirates put their leadoff man on in a 4-4 tie in the eighth, Xavier Nady hit a comebacker to pitcher Anthony Reyes, who fielded the ball and threw to second. But, as shortstop Aaron Miles and second baseman Adam Kennedy converged on the bag, Reyes threw directly to Kennedy, who was behind the bag. Kennedy had the presence of mind to throw to first to get one out, but Ryan Doumit was safe at second where he scored the go-ahead run on a two-out bloop single by Jose Bautista.
Kennedy said that Miles was the one who was supposed to receive the throw. "It looked like (Reyes) got his coverage mixed up," said Kennedy.
Reyes admitted, "I just turned around too quick. Kennedy was the first one I saw and I just threw it."
And manager Tony La Russa said, "(Reyes) knew the shortstop was covering. It just misfired."
In the top of the eighth, Kennedy had led off with a single but was thrown out trying to steal second. Pitcher Adam Wainwright was pinch hitting -- the Cardinals' bench was short with shortstop Cesar Izturis unable to play -- but Wainwright, in a bunt mode, took a high pitch and Kennedy was cut down.
NOTES AND QUOTES
--INF Brendan Ryan was taken off the 15-day disabled list and RHP Brad Thompson was optioned to Class AAA Memphis. Ryan, recovered from a rib-cage injury, will be insurance for an infield weakened by the bruised elbow suffered by SS Cesar Izturis after Izturis was hit by a pitch on Tuesday.
--LHP Randy Flores had his eighth consecutive outing without giving up an earned run with a perfect seventh in which he retired two right-handed batters, including LF Jason Bay. That might lead to Flores facing more right-handers.
--The Cardinals, after starting out 11-4, have dropped five of their last seven and four of the last five.
--CF Rick Ankiel continues to struggle, swinging at virtually everything. He went nothing for four and is one for last 14.
--1B Albert Pujols had two hits and was hit by a pitch as he reached base for the 22nd game in succession. The Cardinals have played only 22 games.