Gradually, the Cardinals are
digging themselves out of the huge hole they created for themselves when they
lost eight of 10 games on a disastrous trip to Pittsburgh, Washington and
Catcher Yadier Molina's
grand slam provided the winning margin Monday as the Cardinals won for the third
time in the last four games and gained ground on Cincinnati and Philadelphia, whom they trail in the division
and wild-card races, respectively. "From now on, we have to win," said Molina.
"That's the rule."
There are 27 games left,
which the Cardinals will play in 27 days. "We'd certainly like to quietly inch
our way back into this and look up and be two games back with two weeks to go,"
shortstop Brendan Ryan said. "That would be pretty nice."
After Matt Holliday had
poked an opposite-field single on a two-strike pitch to break a 2-2 tie in the
eighth and Pedro Feliz had added another run with a hit, Molina, who has a sore
knee, came to bat with the bases loaded and one out.
"All the way through the
at-bat, I was thinking about a flyball," said Molina. "You never want to hit a
groundball there. Never. No matter if I've got a bad knee or not, you never want
to hit a groundball there."
Right-hander Jake Westbrook reeled off his seventh straight start of at least six innings. Only
once has he given up more than three runs. But only once has he gained a
Yet, though he didn't win
Monday, the Cardinals did win for the second time in his starts. "Six innings.
Two runs. That's not too bad," said Westbrook.
CARDINALS 8, BREWERS
6: The Cardinals
survived two homers by Milwaukee RF Corey Hart and another by 2B Rickie Weeks as
reliever Ryan Franklin got Brewers 1B Prince Fielder, who represented the tying
run, on a groundball to first base to end the game in the ninth. C Yadier
Molina's grand slam was the second his career. The other came on Opening Day in
Cardinals made the most of seven hits, stranding just four
Manager Tony La Russa
said he is weary of discussing whether CF Colby Rasmus had asked to be traded
and what is perceived as an adversarial relationship between the two. But, to
the theory that one or the other would have to go next year, La Russa said,
"It's one of the most incorrect evaluations and analyses that I can ever
remember. To say that in 2011, either I'm going to be gone or he's going to be
gone. … Our relationship is nowhere near that."
C Yadier Molina, bothered
by swelling in his right knee, will miss a start Tuesday or Wednesday, manager
Tony La Russa said. Molina had been nothing for his last 10 before singling and
hitting a grand slam on Monday.
INF Felipe Lopez, 8 for
his last 71 (.113), finished up at second base on Monday and will get a start
either Tuesday or Wednesday, or both, because Milwaukee has two left-handers,
Chris Narveson and Chris Capuano, scheduled to pitch.
Nobody else will be
recalled from Class AAA Memphis just yet. The Redbirds, the defending league
champions, won their division in the Pacific Coast League by rallying to beat
Iowa, 7-6, in the final game of the season
Monday at Des
Moines. The best-of-five, first-round playoff series with
Oklahoma City will begin on Wednesday in
RHP Kyle Lohse, who has
made one good start and two bad ones since coming off the disabled list, will
start for the Cardinals on Tuesday night at Milwaukee. Of the confidence Lohse must be
lacking until he has more success, manager Tony La Russa said, "He's not going
there feeling like he's King Kong."
By the Numbers:
22-24 - Cardinals' record against
the rest of the National League Central Division. They finished 12-6 against
Quote to Note:
"At less than 100
percent, he's still a great player."
- Manager Tony La Russa, saying
that 1B Albert Pujols isn't at top form physically in the midst of a recent
C Jason LaRue
(concussion) went on the 15-day disabled list Aug. 13. He was moved to the
60-day DL on Aug. 19, ending his season.
RHP Adam Ottavino (right
shoulder strain) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to July 4, and he
was transferred to the 60-day DL on Aug. 17. He won't need surgery, but he is
out for the season.
3B David Freese (right
ankle surgery) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to June 28, and he
was transferred to the 60-day DL on Aug. 15. He was originally out due to a bone
bruise on his right ankle, and then he broke his left big toe in mid-July. He
tore a right ankle tendon Aug. 2 in his first rehab game with Class AA
Springfield, and he had season-ending surgery Aug. 6.
RHP Brad Penny (strained
upper back) went on the 15-day disabled list May 22. He threw bullpen sessions
June 28 and July 1 but had to cut short a bullpen session July 6 because of
tightness in his triceps area. He underwent an MRI on July 7, which found
nothing that hadn't been diagnosed before. As of Aug. 5, he was playing catch
but not throwing off a mound. Penny is out