Cincinnati at St. Louis

St. Louis
W: M. Mulder (9-5) L: B. Claussen (4-5)
S: J. Isringhausen (22)
HR: CIN - None   STL - R. Sanders (16)

Cardinals 2, Reds 1

CBS wire reports

ST. LOUIS -- Mark Mulder ended a mostly terrible month on a positive note.

Mulder worked into the seventh inning to put a string of poor starts behind him, and Reggie Sanders backed him with a two-run homer that helped the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Cincinnati Reds 2-1 Tuesday night.

"That's what you try to do every time out there," Mulder said. "Obviously, I haven't been as successful lately, but there's ups and downs in baseball and you've got to bounce back from that."

The Cardinals have won three of four, giving them an NL-best record of 48-28. Despite matching a season low with four hits, they sent the Reds to their 15th loss in 17 road games and raised their record against the NL Central to 25-9.

Joe Randa had a first-inning RBI single for the Reds, who have lost three straight under interim manager Jerry Narron after winning their first three following the firing of Dave Miley.

In 6 1/3 innings, Mulder (9-5) gave up seven hits with five strikeouts and three walks. He minimized damage despite giving up three hits in the first and third, benefiting from two double plays.

Mulder entered 1-3 in June while allowing 20 earned runs in 20 innings, a prolonged struggle with his mechanics. In two of his four previous starts this month, the left-hander acquired to be the Cardinals' No. 1 starter didn't last long enough to qualify for a victory.

A day off gave Mulder and the rest of the rotation an extra day to prepare, and he used it to throw an extra bullpen session with pitching coach Dave Duncan.

"Sometimes we always expect, and players themselves expect, all this dramatic change and improvement, and really you just build on baby steps," manager Tony La Russa said. "Nothing works better than success because now he's a little bit more confident."

In four appearances against the Reds this season, Mulder is 2-2 with a 5.64 ERA -- two effective performances and two awful ones.

With two on in the seventh, Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina picked off Rich Aurilia at first to end the inning. Molina, in his first year as a starter, has picked off seven runners and is 12-for-21 throwing out runners attempting to steal.

Aurilia didn't think he was out.

"I didn't feel like it was even close," Aurilia said. "From what I've heard, it didn't even look close. I felt like I was in there by a decent amount."

Jason Isringhausen, the Cardinals' fifth pitcher, worked the ninth for his 22nd save in 24 chances and the 199th of his career. Isringhausen blew a save in his last outing on Sunday, giving up a game-tying homer in the ninth to the Pirates' Jason Bay in a 5-4, 10-inning loss.

Sanders, batting cleanup instead of Jim Edmonds against left-hander Brandon Claussen (4-5), hit his 16th homer and second in two games after Albert Pujols singled with two outs in the first inning. Sanders leads the Cardinals with 23 two-out RBI.

Claussen, who won three of his four previous decisions, allowed only one other runner to reach second base during his six-inning stint. He gave up four hits with six strikeouts and one walk.

"That first inning, I didn't want to walk Reggie," Claussen said. "I challenged him and he challenged me back."


Cardinals 1B coach Dave McKay returned to his post after missing 10 games with a back injury. Bench coach Joe Pettini coached first in his absence. ... Sanders is batting .377 (26-for-69) in his last 19 starts with six homers and 16 RBI. ... The Reds and Devil Rays are the only teams in the major leagues without a complete game. ... The attendance of 38,640 was the first crowd below 40,000 at Busch Stadium since May 25, a stretch of 15 games. ... Claussen was hitless in two at-bats and is 4-for-44 in his career. ... Pujols had two hits and is 16-for-37 (.432) during a 10-game hitting streak. He also has 30 multihit games, tied with Brady Clark of the Brewers for the NL lead.

Copyright 2017 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
Players of the Game
St. Louis

M. Mulder
IP 6.1
H 7
ER 1
BB 3
K 5
St. Louis

R. Sanders
AB 3
R 1
H 1
HR 1

Related Video

June 16, 2017
Stock Down: Cincinnati Reds (0:46)
Cincinnati Reds
Felipe Lopez, SS4120001 .304
Rich Aurilia, 2B4010012 .257
Sean Casey, 1B4020012 .322
Joe Randa, 3B3021110 .297
Wily Mo Pena, RF4010024 .271
    Kent Mercker, P0000000 .000
Adam Dunn, LF4000003 .242
Jason LaRue, C3000111 .257
Jason Romano, CF3000011 .300
   a- Javier Valentin, PH0000100 .265
    Ray Olmedo, PR0000000 .000
Brandon Claussen, P2000001 .048
   b- Edwin Encarnacion, PH0000100 .000
    Matt Belisle, P0000000 .143
    Jacob Cruz, RF1000011 .242
a-walked for Romano in the 9th
b-walked for Claussen in the 7th
2B - Joe Randa (18, Mulder)
RBI - Joe Randa (42)
SB - Ray Olmedo (1, 2nd base off Isringhausen/Molina)
PK - Rich Aurilia (1, King)
Team LOB - 8
Cincinnati Reds
Brandon Claussen (L,4-5) 6422161 3.97
Matt Belisle 1.1000000 4.47
Kent Mercker 0.2000100 2.78
Pitches-Strikes - Brandon Claussen 92-60, Matt Belisle 11-8, Kent Mercker 8-4
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Brandon Claussen 3-8, Matt Belisle 3-1, Kent Mercker 1-1
Batters Faced - Brandon Claussen 22, Matt Belisle 4, Kent Mercker 3
St. Louis Cardinals
David Eckstein, SS3010110 .293
Jim Edmonds, CF4000012 .286
Albert Pujols, 1B3120001 .340
Reggie Sanders, LF3112001 .281
Scott Rolen, 3B3000010 .243
Mark Grudzielanek, 2B3000000 .290
    Julian Tavarez, P0000000 .000
    Jason Isringhausen, P0000000 .000
So Taguchi, RF3000010 .274
Yadier Molina, C2000100 .266
Mark Mulder, P2000021 .138
    Brad Thompson, P0000000 .000
    Ray King, P0000000 .000
    Abraham Nunez, 2B1000000 .316
HR - Reggie Sanders (16, Claussen)
RBI - Reggie Sanders 2 (39)
2-OUT RBI - Reggie Sanders 2 (22)
SB - David Eckstein (7, 2nd base off Claussen/LaRue)
CS - Yadier Molina (2, 2nd base by Claussen/LaRue)
Team LOB - 3
DP - Rolen-Grudzielanek-Pujols, Eckstein-Grudzielanek-Pujols
St. Louis Cardinals
Mark Mulder (W,9-5) 6.1711350 4.54
Brad Thompson (H,5) 0.1100000 2.05
Ray King (H,10) 0.2000000 2.45
Julian Tavarez (H,19) 0.2000010 2.52
Jason Isringhausen (S,22) 1000120 2.05
Pitches-Strikes - Mark Mulder 103-62, Brad Thompson 4-2, Ray King 5-4, Julian Tavarez 10-7, Jason Isringhausen 16-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Mark Mulder 9-3, Brad Thompson 1-0, Ray King 1-0
Batters Faced - Mark Mulder 27, Brad Thompson 2, Ray King 1, Julian Tavarez 2, Jason Isringhausen 4
Game Information
Attendance - 38640
Game Time - 2:34
Temperature - 91
Umpires - Home - John Hirschbeck, First Base - Kerwin Danley, Second Base - Jim Reynolds, Third Base - Wally Bell