St. Louis at Pittsburgh

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Dominating Carpenter, Cardinals silence Pirates

CBS wire reports

PITTSBURGH -- Chris Carpenter always arrives at the ballpark thinking he is going to pitch an exceptional game. Maybe that's why he does exactly that so often.

Carpenter limited the Pirates to two hits over eight innings in his third consecutive strong start, and Jim Edmonds and David Eckstein homered in the St. Louis Cardinals' 4-0 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Wednesday.

The right-handed Carpenter has been near perfect on the road the last two seasons, going 14-1 in 18 starts, and he was again in beating the Pirates for the sixth time in seven career decisions. Repeatedly getting ahead in the count, he didn't allow a runner after hitting Chris Duffy with a pitch to start the first until rookie Ronny Paulino singled with one out in the sixth for his third career hit.

Paulino was fooled earlier in the at-bat, bailing out on a first-pitch breaking ball that broke over the plate. But he worked the count to 2-2 before lining a single into short left field.

"I know I got a little careless. I threw him a lot of breaking balls in a row," said Carpenter, who was aware he had a no-hit bid going. "That's why it's so hard to do it."

The Pirates, 11-32 against the Cardinals in PNC Park, didn't threaten until Freddy Sanchez singled and Jason Bay walked starting the seventh. But Carpenter got Jeromy Burnitz and Craig Wilson to fly out and Mike Edwards to strike out.

"That was vintage Carpenter," Cardinals manager Tony La Russa said. "He had first and second, the middle of the lineup, and he gets out of it. That's what he does. He's got three different fastballs, a curve, a changeup, five or six things he throws a guy. He gives different looks to different hitters. He's quite a handful."

As he expects to be.

"I really believe that if you concentrate, and locate your pitches down in the strike zone, you're going to be successful," Carpenter said. "I don't go into any game wondering how I'm going to feel and if I'm going to do well. I feel I'm going to do well -- and I have control of that, as long as I execute my pitches down in the strike zone."

Burnitz said the problem with facing Carpenter is rarely makes a mistake.

"When you pitch with the success he's had, he's executing every pitch he's got," Burnitz said. "That's how you achieve the level he has."

Carpenter (2-1) struck out six and walked one to lower his ERA to 1.67, and he has allowed only one earned run and 10 hits over 22 innings in his last three starts. He was coming off a 1-0 loss to the Reds' Aaron Harang on Friday.

"He doesn't give you anything twice," Sanchez said. "It's a guessing game with him and, today, I was always guessing wrong."

Jason Isringhausen, shaky at times to start the season, finished the two-hitter.

Albert Pujols failed to homer after hitting his ninth and 10th of the season in the previous two games of the three-game series. He flied out in the first, then walked his next three times up. After he was intentionally walked in the ninth to put two on, Edmonds hit his two-run double.

The pitching matchup -- Carpenter vs. Victor Santos -- looked like a mismatch, with Carpenter bringing an 86-61 career record into the game to Santos' 18-35. But Santos (1-3) made the best start of his four with Pittsburgh, allowing no other hits except for the two homers over six innings, striking out four and walking one.

Edmonds returned after not starting for four games (right shoulder inflammation) and drove in three runs. He gave the Cardinals a 1-0 lead with his second homer, a drive into the right-field seats to start the second, and added a two-run double in the ninth against Roberto Hernandez.

"I was a little worried about how I would do today -- we've been playing pretty well since I came out of the lineup -- but I wanted to get in there and take a little pressure off Albert," Edmonds said.

Eckstein homered with two outs in the third, a shot down the left-field line on a full-count pitch.


  • Pirates 3B Joe Randa sat out with a sore right foot after fouling a pitch off his foot Tuesday night. He is listed as day to day.
  • Immediately after Paulino singled, Carpenter got his 1,000th career strikeout by getting pinch-hitter Nate McLouth on a called third strike.
  • The Pirates went 4-6 on their homestand.
  • There were 31 homers in the 10 games at PNC Park, nearly double the pace of a year ago when 140 homers were hit there in 81 games.
  • Carpenter is 4-0 against Pittsburgh the last two seasons.
  • St. Louis is 48-17 over the last three seasons when Carpenter starts.
  • Hernandez made his 900th big league appearance.
Copyright 2015 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.
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Chris Carpenter has the Bucs' number, beating them for the sixth time in seven career decisions.  (AP)
Chris Carpenter has the Bucs' number, beating them for the sixth time in seven career decisions. (AP)

Players of the Game
St. Louis

C. Carpenter
IP 8.0
H 2
ER 0
BB 1
K 6
St. Louis

J. Edmonds
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1

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St. Louis Cardinals
David Eckstein, SS4221000 .306
Scott Spiezio, 3B4000010 .143
    Jason Isringhausen, P0000000 .000
Albert Pujols, 1B1100300 .354
Jim Edmonds, CF4123002 .186
Juan Encarnacion, LF-RF4000010 .204
John Rodriguez, RF2000010 .333
    So Taguchi, LF2000001 .205
Yadier Molina, C3000000 .180
Aaron Miles, 2B3010000 .324
Chris Carpenter, P3000021 .111
    Scott Rolen, 3B0000000 .294
2B - Jim Edmonds (3, Hernandez), Aaron Miles (4, Torres)
HR - David Eckstein (1, Santos), Jim Edmonds (2, Santos)
RBI - David Eckstein (3), Jim Edmonds 3 (10)
2-OUT RBI - David Eckstein (2)
SB - Juan Encarnacion (1, 3rd base off Hernandez/Paulino)
Team LOB - 2
DP - Eckstein-Pujols
St. Louis Cardinals
Chris Carpenter (W,2-1) 8200160 1.67
Jason Isringhausen 1000110 9.00
HBP - Duffy (by Chris Carpenter)
Pitches-Strikes - Chris Carpenter 110-73, Jason Isringhausen 18-10
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Chris Carpenter 9-8, Jason Isringhausen 1-1
Batters Faced - Chris Carpenter 27, Jason Isringhausen 4
Pittsburgh Pirates
Chris Duffy, CF3000011 .193
Freddy Sanchez, SS4010000 .324
Jason Bay, LF2000210 .315
Jeromy Burnitz, RF4000003 .246
Craig Wilson, 1B3000012 .318
Mike Edwards, 3B3000022 .250
Jose Castillo, 2B3000010 .308
Ronny Paulino, C3010000 .167
Victor Santos, P1000000 .167
   a- Nate McLouth, PH1000011 .259
    Salomon Torres, P0000000 .000
   b- Jose Hernandez, PH1000000 .188
    Roberto Hernandez, P0000000 .000
a-struck out for Santos in the 6th
b-flied out for Torres in the 8th
DP - Castillo-F. Sanchez-C. Wilson, F. Sanchez-Castillo-C. Wilson
E - Ronny Paulino (1, Wild throw)
Pittsburgh Pirates
Victor Santos (L,1-3) 6222142 5.85
Salomon Torres 2100110 3.14
Roberto Hernandez 1222100 2.16
IBB - Pujols by Roberto Hernandez
Pitches-Strikes - Victor Santos 84-52, Salomon Torres 26-14, Roberto Hernandez 26-14
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Victor Santos 4-9, Salomon Torres 3-1, Roberto Hernandez 3-0
Batters Faced - Victor Santos 20, Salomon Torres 7, Roberto Hernandez 6
Game Information
Attendance - 15085
Game Time - 2:12
Temperature - 68
Umpires - Home - Greg Gibson, First Base - Paul Nauert, Second Base - Charlie Reliford, Third Base - Larry Vanover