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Oakland at St. Louis

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Oakland (33-36)0400000004100
St. Louis (37-30) «20002020x691

Cardinals 6, Athletics 4

CBSSports.com wire reports
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ST. LOUIS -- Matt Holliday hit a drive over the wall in center in his first at-bat. He got lucky later, picking up an RBI single with a perfectly placed blooper.

For one night, at least, it seemed as if everything went right for St. Louis' new No. 2 hitter.

Holliday had three hits and three RBI in the Cardinals' 6-4 victory over the Oakland Athletics on Friday, enjoying his first success since being elevated to the second spot in the order.

"It's always nice to help the team win," Holliday said. "This is a frustrating game and a humbling game, and so you just try to do the best you can.

"I think I've put out a career that eventually I'll start getting some hits."

Manager Tony La Russa is cautiously optimistic that the worst is over for Holliday. Especially batting in front of three-time NL MVP Albert Pujols.

"With Mr. Scary hitting behind him, he should get some pitches to hit," La Russa said. "It creates a lot of problems for the other side and that's what you try to do."

Skip Schumaker drove in the go-ahead run in the seventh as La Russa improved to 6-1 against his old team. Schumaker had three hits and scored three times.

Pujols, a major league-best .352 hitter in interleague play for his career, singled in a run and walked twice for St. Louis, which has won three of four overall. Chris Carpenter (8-1) gave up four runs in the second, matching his season worst, but none in his other six innings.

"The first couple of innings I didn't make very many good pitches," Carpenter said. "I battled all night long, did the best I could, and our guys picked me up."

Rajai Davis matched his career high with four hits and drove in a run for the Athletics, who have lost six of seven. Conor Jackson had two hits and two RBI.

Oakland is a season-worst three games below .500.

"We've been playing decent, I like the way our lineup looks," manager Bob Geren said. "We've been playing decent, we really have."

Holliday hit a two-run homer against Vin Mazzaro in the first -- ending a 43 at-bat RBI drought -- but the Athletics jumped on Carpenter in the second. The big hit was a two-run double by Jackson, with Davis and Kurt Suzuki also driving in a run.

Holliday and Pujols hit RBI singles in consecutive at-bats in the fifth, tying it at 4. Holliday's hit barely cleared the infield, finding a hole between shortstop Cliff Pennington and a charging Jackson in left.

Holliday began the year as the cleanup hitter but was moved to second on Monday, his third spot in the lineup this season. He was 2 for 11 over his first three games and struck out on a ball in the dirt with the go-ahead run on third in the eighth inning on Wednesday.

Even after the big day, he is sixth on the team with 28 RBI and is batting only .200 with runners in scoring position.

The Cardinals are counting on more nights like this one.

"That's Matt Holliday," Carpenter said. "That's who we know."

Carpenter allowed a season-high 10 hits but Oakland had no runners in scoring position in its last five innings against the right-hander. Carpenter has allowed double-digit hits in only 27 of 275 career starts.

Schumaker hit an RBI double and Ryan Ludwick added a run-scoring single against Brad Ziegler (2-4) in the seventh. Ziegler retired the 6-7-8 batters in order in the sixth.

"In the sixth, they hit it at guys," Ziegler said. "In the seventh, they hit it where we weren't."

Ryan Franklin finished for his 13th save in 14 chances.

The Cardinals and Athletics are meeting for the third time in interleague play, which has not diminished La Russa's enthusiasm for facing the team he managed from 1986-95. La Russa lives in northern California, about a half-hour drive from Oakland-Alameda County Coliseum, and said he often watches Athletics games late at night.

"A lot of good memories," La Russa said. "I still live there, as opposed to living here."

Davis has four straight multihit games, going 11 for 19, and is batting .386 (17 for 45) during a 10-game hitting streak.

"I thought we did well against Carpenter considering how good a pitcher he is," Davis said.

Notes

Cardinals SS Brendan Ryan, a big Lakers fan, hung an L.A. jersey with his No. 13 in his locker before the game. Batting ninth, Ryan doubled, walked and scored twice. ... Cardinals Hall of Famer Lou Brock was honored on his 71st birthday. ... Pennington doubled and singled his first two trips and is 8 for 17 the last five games.

 
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
St. Louis

M. Holliday
AB 4
R 1
H 3
HR 1
RBI 3
Oakland

R. Davis
AB 5
R 1
H 4
HR 0
RBI 1
 
Oakland Athletics
Rajai Davis, CF5141000 .283
Daric Barton, 1B4000004 .278
Conor Jackson, LF4122012 .252
Kurt Suzuki, C3011011 .267
Ryan Sweeney, RF3000101 .301
Kevin Kouzmanoff, 3B4000003 .285
Mark Ellis, 2B4110000 .286
Cliff Pennington, SS4120020 .225
Vin Mazzaro, P2000023 .000
   a- Eric Patterson, PH1000000 .206
    Brad Ziegler, P0000000 .000
    Cedrick Bowers, P0000000 .000
   b- Jack Cust, PH1000000 .286
Totals35410416  
a-fouled out for Mazzaro in the 6th
b-grounded out for Bowers in the 9th
Batting
2B - Rajai Davis (12, Carpenter), Conor Jackson (13, Carpenter), Cliff Pennington (12, Carpenter)
RBI - Rajai Davis (20), Conor Jackson 2 (13), Kurt Suzuki (30)
2-OUT RBI - Conor Jackson 2 (5), Kurt Suzuki (5)
CS - Rajai Davis (5, 2nd base by Carpenter/Molina)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
DP - Ellis-Pennington-Barton
Oakland Athletics
Vin Mazzaro 5644351 5.22
Brad Ziegler (L,2-4) 1.1322100 3.18
Cedrick Bowers 1.2000130 3.24
IBB - Pujols by Brad Ziegler
Pitches-Strikes - Vin Mazzaro 92-56, Brad Ziegler 17-11, Cedrick Bowers 22-14
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Vin Mazzaro 4-5, Brad Ziegler 3-1
Batters Faced - Vin Mazzaro 23, Brad Ziegler 8, Cedrick Bowers 5
St. Louis Cardinals
Skip Schumaker, 2B4331000 .249
Matt Holliday, LF4133001 .291
Albert Pujols, 1B2011200 .310
Ryan Ludwick, RF4011014 .284
Colby Rasmus, CF3000114 .287
David Freese, 3B4000021 .312
Yadier Molina, C4000010 .249
Chris Carpenter, P3000020 .097
    Kyle McClellan, P0000000 .500
   a- Nick Stavinoha, PH0000100 .314
    Ryan Franklin, P0000000 .000
Brendan Ryan, SS3210111 .219
Totals3169658  
a-walked for McClellan in the 8th
Batting
2B - Skip Schumaker (11, Ziegler), Brendan Ryan (9, Ziegler)
HR - Matt Holliday (7, Mazzaro)
RBI - Skip Schumaker (15), Matt Holliday 3 (28), Albert Pujols (50), Ryan Ludwick (41)
CS - Albert Pujols (2, 3rd base by Bowers/Suzuki)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
DP - Pujols-Ryan
E - Yadier Molina (3, Throwing)
St. Louis Cardinals
Chris Carpenter (W,8-1) 71044150 2.83
Kyle McClellan (H,8) 1000000 2.25
Ryan Franklin (S,13) 1000010 1.80
HBP - Suzuki (by Chris Carpenter)
Pitches-Strikes - Chris Carpenter 103-73, Kyle McClellan 16-11, Ryan Franklin 11-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Chris Carpenter 9-5, Kyle McClellan 3-0, Ryan Franklin 1-1
Batters Faced - Chris Carpenter 31, Kyle McClellan 3, Ryan Franklin 3
Game Information
Attendance - 40083
Game Time - 2:28
Temperature - 83
Umpires - Home - Angel Hernandez, First Base - Joe West, Second Base - Dan Bellino, Third Base - Rob Drake