St. Louis at Washington

Scoreboard
St. Louis (50-57)0010000001102
Washington (50-60) «00050520x12141

Nationals 12, Cardinals 1

CBS SportsLine.com wire reports
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WASHINGTON -- The pitcher batted eighth and an infielder pitched for the St. Louis Cardinals. Both moves worked out OK for manager Tony La Russa.

Everything else, however, went Washington's way Saturday.

Ryan Zimmerman hit two home runs, and Joel Hanrahan added a two-run double in his first major league win as Washington scored its most lopsided victory of the season, pounding the St. Louis Cardinals 12-1.

The Nationals winning streak reached a season-best five games, while the Cardinals tried to spark a slumping offense by batting their pitcher eighth and ended the game with an infielder pitching.

"I finally had a day off from managing," Nationals manager Manny Acta said. "It was the first time I could just lay back and wait for 27 outs. It was nice for my brain cells."

While the first-year manager had a relaxing evening, his counterpart had to get creative before and during the game.

La Russa batted second baseman Adam Kennedy ninth and his pitcher eighth. It was the first time La Russa batted his pitcher eighth since 1998.

For a while, the move looked brilliant. Kennedy hit a home run with one out in the third, giving the Cardinals a 1-0 lead.

But Washington scored 12 runs, and the only pitcher who could stop the Nationals' suddenly potent offense was a 5-foot-8 utility infielder, Aaron Miles who hadn't pitched since he was 14.

La Russa, whose team gave up 12 or more runs twice in the last four games, asked pitching coach Dave Duncan to suggest another reliever.

"I didn't know who to pitch, and Duncan said: 'Who's our shortest reliever?' That's pretty obvious, it's Miles," La Russa said. "I applaud him for his sense of humor when we're getting our butt beat like that."

Hanrahan (1-0), a 25-year-old rookie making his second major league start, didn't allow another run pitching into the fifth inning. He gave up six hits, struck out three and walked three in sending the Cardinals to their fourth straight defeat.

He also came up with a big hit during a five-run fourth that gave Washington a 5-1 lead.

Zimmerman led off the inning with his 16th home run off Joel Pineiro (0-1), a shot that landed several rows into the upper deck in left field. Dmitri Young singled, and after a pair of outs, Brian Schneider and Nook Logan singled to make it 2-1.

Hanrahan then hit a two-run double to left, and Felipe Lopez followed with a base hit. When Pineiro tried to pick Lopez off first, his throw was high and sailed into short right field, allowing Hanrahan to scamper home.

Hanrahan made his debut a week before against New York.

"It's been a long week," Hanrahan said. "I've been waiting for this day to come. It didn't feel like it would ever get here. I've been in the minors for so long, you wonder if you have the stuff to be here."

Pineiro, obtained from Boston on Monday, was making his first major league start in 11 months. He gave up five runs -- four earned -- on seven hits in five innings.

The Nationals added five more runs in the sixth. Logan hit a run-scoring double, Tony Batista had a pinch-hit single and Ronnie Belliard hit a sacrifice fly, before Zimmerman connected on a two-run homer -- the first multihomer game of his career.

"I'm just being a little more patient," Zimmerman said. "I'm getting pitches that I can handle and not trying to do too much. I'm laying off pitches early in the count. When you're in command, you can look for the pitches you want."

With a chance to hit his third home run, he faced Miles, who retired the side in the eighth on just seven pitches.

"It's amazing that I got out of the inning without anybody getting on, but I've got to give it up to the bullpen," Miles said. "They told me the slower you throw, the better, and they were right."

Schneider's two-run home run in the seventh gave Washington a 12-1 lead.

Notes

The Cardinals' Albert Pujols missed the game with a sore right elbow. It was the first game he missed this season. ... Washington tied a season-high with five hits in both the fourth and sixth innings. They have four five-hit innings. ... The Nationals turned four double plays for the third time this season. ... The 12 runs Washington scored were the second most this season.

 
Copyright 2014 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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Players of the Game
Washington

R. Zimmerman
AB 5
R 2
H 2
HR 2
RBI 3
Washington

B. Schneider
AB 3
R 3
H 2
HR 1
RBI 2
 

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St. Louis Cardinals
David Eckstein, SS5010013 .292
Jim Edmonds, CF4020113 .232
Scott Rolen, 3B4010116 .271
Chris Duncan, LF-1B4010022 .285
Scott Spiezio, 1B2000103 .271
    Mike Maroth, P0000000 .214
    Brad Thompson, P0000000 .158
   a- So Taguchi, PH-RF1010000 .298
Juan Encarnacion, RF3000102 .293
    Aaron Miles, P0000000 .284
Yadier Molina, C4000012 .259
Joel Pineiro, P1000100 .000
    Ryan Ludwick, LF2020000 .250
Adam Kennedy, 2B4121001 .225
Totals34110156  
a-singled for Thompson in the 8th
Batting
2B - Jim Edmonds (6, Hanrahan)
HR - Adam Kennedy (3, Hanrahan)
RBI - Adam Kennedy (18)
Team LOB - 11
Fielding
DP - Kennedy-Eckstein-Spiezio
E - Adam Kennedy (7, Misplayed grounder), Joel Pineiro (1, Throwing)
St. Louis Cardinals
Joel Pineiro (L,1-2) 5754221 5.31
Mike Maroth 0.2552001 6.79
Brad Thompson 1.1222121 5.21
Aaron Miles 1000000 0.00
Pitches-Strikes - Joel Pineiro 81-48, Mike Maroth 24-17, Brad Thompson 17-10, Aaron Miles 9-6
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Joel Pineiro 10-2, Mike Maroth 1-2, Aaron Miles 2-1
Batters Faced - Joel Pineiro 23, Mike Maroth 8, Brad Thompson 7, Aaron Miles 3
Washington Nationals
Felipe Lopez, SS3110100 .244
   a- D'Angelo Jimenez, PH-SS1000001 .200
Ronnie Belliard, 2B4001004 .297
Ryan Zimmerman, 3B5223000 .270
Dmitri Young, 1B4030000 .336
    Billy Traber, P0000000 .000
   b- Ryan Langerhans, PH-RF1000000 .160
Austin Kearns, RF5100033 .251
    Chris Schroder, P0000000 .000
Ryan Church, LF4110002 .261
Brian Schneider, C3322100 .233
Nook Logan, CF3232100 .258
Joel Hanrahan, P1112000 .500
    Saul Rivera, P0000000 .000
   c- Tony Batista, PH-1B2111011 .237
Totals3612141134  
a-flied out for F. Lopez in the 7th
b-flied out for Traber in the 8th
c-singled for Rivera in the 6th
Batting
2B - Dmitri Young (28, Maroth), Brian Schneider (15, Maroth), Nook Logan (11, Maroth), Joel Hanrahan (1, Pineiro)
HR - Ryan Zimmerman 2 (17, Pineiro, Maroth), Brian Schneider (5, Thompson)
SF - Ronnie Belliard (3)
SH - Joel Hanrahan (1)
RBI - Ronnie Belliard (37), Ryan Zimmerman 3 (60), Brian Schneider 2 (39), Nook Logan 2 (9), Joel Hanrahan 2 (2), Tony Batista (10)
2-OUT RBI - Ryan Zimmerman 2 (20), Nook Logan (7), Joel Hanrahan 2 (2)
SB - Nook Logan (12, 2nd base off Pineiro/Molina)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
DP - Belliard-Young-F. Lopez, Belliard-Young, Zimmerman-Belliard-Young, Jimenez-Batista
E - Tony Batista (1, Misplayed grounder)
Washington Nationals
Joel Hanrahan (W,1-0) 5611331 3.27
Saul Rivera (H,14) 1000100 3.41
Billy Traber 2300010 4.66
Chris Schroder 1100120 1.19
Pitches-Strikes - Joel Hanrahan 93-57, Saul Rivera 9-3, Billy Traber 20-18, Chris Schroder 25-14
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Joel Hanrahan 2-8, Saul Rivera 1-1, Billy Traber 2-2, Chris Schroder 2-0
Batters Faced - Joel Hanrahan 22, Saul Rivera 3, Billy Traber 8, Chris Schroder 6
Game Information
Attendance - 29252
Game Time - 2:50
Temperature - 93
Umpires - Home - Mike Winters, First Base - Brian Runge, Second Base - Mark Wegner, Third Base - Adrian Johnson