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Los Angeles at St. Louis

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L.A. Dodgers (49-40)000100000142
St. Louis (48-41) «20021020x7120

Cards' Carpenter solid, stays perfect against Dodgers

CBSSports.com wire reports
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ST. LOUIS -- Chris Carpenter looked like an All-Star again. The break did Clayton Kershaw no good at all.

Improved mechanics allowed Carpenter to go after hitters instead of trying to trick them. He was in command, allowing four hits in eight innings of a 7-1 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers on Thursday night.

"I definitely felt better," Carpenter said. "I've still got some work to do, but no question it was way better than it's felt the last two times."

Rookie Allen Craig got the first two RBI of his career without a hit off Kershaw (9-5), who dug his own hole with consecutive walks on 11 pitches to start the Cardinals' two-run first, meriting a quick visit from pitching coach Rick Honeycutt. Kershaw also got tagged with a liner off his right leg for an infield hit by Aaron Miles in the second and allowed four earned runs in 4 1/3 innings with one strikeout.

"Just a rough night," Kershaw said. "You saw it, I made some all right pitches. I was out of rhythm early."

Kershaw fanned 12 in his last pre-All-Star break outing a week ago in a victory over the Cubs, but faltered mostly due to a lack of control against a lineup that featured eight right-handed bats.

"No command," manager Joe Torre said. "His breaking ball had no sharpness to it. He hadn't pitched in a week, you've got to chalk it up to that."

The lone left-handed hitting starter, Colby Rasmus, walked and doubled in three at-bats against Kershaw.

"He's aggressive and I'm aggressive, so it's a good matchup," Rasmus said.

Andre Ethier homered and singled for the Dodgers, who committed errors on consecutive plays in St. Louis' two-run fourth.

Carpenter (10-3) and the Giants' Tim Lincecum were the only two National League pitchers not used in the All-Star game, by arrangement because both had starts scheduled for Thursday. The right-hander looked much sharper than in a pair of losses before the break in which he permitted 11 runs in nine innings. He retired the first seven batters to open the game, and eight in a row after Ethier's 15th homer with one out in the fourth.

"That's six days rest, and he was strong," manager Tony La Russa said. "He was nails all night long."

Carpenter struck out six with no walks. He's 6-0 with a 1.77 ERA against the Dodgers, including seven scoreless innings June 8 at Los Angeles without a decision, and 19-4 against the NL West.

Two of Albert Pujols' three hits came off Kershaw, who allowed one run in 15 innings in two previous starts in St. Louis. Counting a first-round playoff sweep last October, St. Louis had lost six in a row to the Dodgers.

Manny Ramirez was 0 for 3 with a fielding error in left after being activated from the 15-day disabled list earlier in the day. Ramirez misplayed the bounce on Yadier Molina's single to open the fourth and shortstop Rafael Furcal followed with a wild relay to the plate on Miles' RBI single as the Cardinals took a 4-1 lead.

Plenty of cushion for Carpenter.

"He's so good," Torre said. "He knows what to do with the lead. He frustrates you because he can pitch in and around the strike zone and he can throw a strike any time he wants."

Rookie Jon Jay, a defensive replacement in right field in the sixth inning, had an RBI double in the seventh to extend his hitting streak to 12 games. He's batting .500 (19 for 38) during the longest current streak in the league.

Felipe Lopez had been 0 for 13 against Kershaw before his RBI double in the fourth. Craig, recalled from Triple-A Memphis earlier in the day, had a run-scoring groundout and sacrifice fly.

Notes

  • Kershaw failed to qualify for a victory for only the third time in 19 starts. He had allowed two or fewer runs in nine of his previous 12 outings.
  • Carpenter hasn't lost three straight decisions since 2002, when he lost four in a row with the Blue Jays.
  • Carpenter has allowed 15 homers, 11 with the bases empty, after surrendering seven all last season.
  • The Cardinals are 12-3 against the Dodgers at 5-year-old Busch Stadium.
 
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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Chris Carpenter goes seven scoreless, eight in total, to improve to 6-0 against the Dodgers. (Getty Images)
Chris Carpenter goes seven scoreless, eight in total, to improve to 6-0 against the Dodgers. (Getty Images)

Players of the Game
St. Louis

A. Pujols
AB 5
R 1
H 3
HR 0
RBI 0
Los Angeles

A. Ethier
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 1
 
Los Angeles Dodgers
Rafael Furcal, SS4000021 .328
Matt Kemp, CF4000020 .258
Andre Ethier, RF4121000 .326
Manny Ramirez, LF3000001 .317
James Loney, 1B3000001 .306
Casey Blake, 3B3000020 .256
Russell Martin, C3010000 .245
Blake DeWitt, 2B3010001 .270
Clayton Kershaw, P1000011 .063
    Justin Miller, P0000000 .000
   a- Garret Anderson, PH1000000 .178
    Travis Schlichting, P0000000 .000
   b- Ronnie Belliard, PH1000011 .220
    George Sherrill, P0000000 .000
    Jon Link, P0000000 .000
Totals3014108  
a-grounded out for Miller in the 6th
b-struck out for Schlichting in the 8th
Batting
2B - Blake DeWitt (14, Carpenter)
HR - Andre Ethier (15, Carpenter)
RBI - Andre Ethier (55)
Team LOB - 2
Fielding
DP - Blake-DeWitt
E - Rafael Furcal (12, Throwing), Manny Ramirez (3, Misplayed grounder)
Los Angeles Dodgers
Clayton Kershaw (L,9-5) 4.1854310 3.16
Justin Miller 0.2000100 4.07
Travis Schlichting 2222110 1.69
George Sherrill 0.2100010 7.08
Jon Link 0.1100000 3.86
IBB - Holliday by Clayton Kershaw, Miles by Justin Miller
WP - Jon Link (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Clayton Kershaw 88-50, Justin Miller 7-3, Travis Schlichting 32-21, George Sherrill 14-8, Jon Link 12-6
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Clayton Kershaw 4-7, Justin Miller 2-0, Travis Schlichting 5-0
Batters Faced - Clayton Kershaw 23, Justin Miller 3, Travis Schlichting 9, George Sherrill 3, Jon Link 2
St. Louis Cardinals
Felipe Lopez, 3B4111111 .269
Colby Rasmus, CF3110111 .285
   a- Randy Winn, PH-CF1010000 .229
Albert Pujols, 1B5130001 .313
Matt Holliday, LF3111202 .300
Allen Craig, RF2002002 .048
    Jon Jay, RF1111000 .386
Yadier Molina, C4121002 .227
Aaron Miles, 2B3121111 .342
Chris Carpenter, P3000004 .079
    Mitchell Boggs, P0000000 .000
Brendan Ryan, SS4000002 .190
Totals33712753  
a-singled for Rasmus in the 8th
Batting
2B - Felipe Lopez (12, Kershaw), Colby Rasmus (18, Kershaw), Albert Pujols (22, Kershaw), Jon Jay (7, Schlichting)
SF - Allen Craig (1)
SH - Chris Carpenter (5)
RBI - Felipe Lopez (23), Matt Holliday (52), Allen Craig 2 (2), Jon Jay (10), Yadier Molina (34), Aaron Miles (3)
2-OUT RBI - Felipe Lopez (8)
Team LOB - 9
Fielding
DP - Miles-Ryan-Pujols
St. Louis Cardinals
Chris Carpenter (W,10-3) 8411061 3.16
Mitchell Boggs 1000020 2.48
Pitches-Strikes - Chris Carpenter 101-70, Mitchell Boggs 10-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Chris Carpenter 9-8
Batters Faced - Chris Carpenter 27, Mitchell Boggs 3
Game Information
Attendance - 41771
Game Time - 2:40
Temperature - 90
Umpires - Home - Gerry Davis, First Base - Ron Kulpa, Second Base - Greg Gibson, Third Base - Brian Knight