St. Louis at Chicago

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St. Louis (11-6)000200000251
Chi. Cubs (5-12) «100000002370

Cubs' Mather wins it in 9th with single

CBSSports.com wire reports
  •  

CHICAGO -- Joe Mather was just happy to help the Cubs get a win. Beating his former teammates was pretty sweet, too.

Mather's two-run single with two outs in the ninth inning rallied Chicago to a 3-2 win over the St. Louis Cardinals on Monday night.

"It just feels good," Mather said. "The whole atmosphere in the stadium and in the clubhouse, in the dugout, everybody was just excited."

Hard-throwing closer Jason Motte (1-1) had the Cubs down to their final strike when Mather, a former Cardinal, grounded a 2-2 slider up the middle, driving in Bryan LaHairand Geovany Soto.

"I'd be lying if I said it wasn't [extra satisfying]," Mather said. "I have a lot of good friends over there. It does feel good. When it comes down to it, ultimately we won a big-league game and the self-satisfaction is secondary."

While Mather got the winning hit, LaHair's 12-pitch battle with Motte may have been the game's key at-bat. After the count went full, LaHair fouled off six straight pitches before Motte missed with a fastball.

"I just don't have any fear," LaHair said about his patient approach. "That kind of situation, you have to just kind of relax and just breathe. Let the anxiety go."

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Motte then walked Soto, but said it wasn't a matter of LaHair wearing him down.

"No, I'm out there still trying to make pitches," Motte said. "I made some really good pitches, he just did a good job of fouling them off and keeping himself in the at-bat."

Steve Clevenger's grounder moved the runners up to set the plate for Mather, who was drafted by the Cardinals in 2001 and spent 10 seasons in the organization.

Mather fell behind 0-2 and angrily stalked out of the batter's box after taking the second strike. He then took two pitches off the plate before lacing the game-ending single.

The hit made a winner of reliever Rafael Dolis (1-1), though for seven-plus innings the starters were the story of the game.

Jaime Garcia appeared to have outpitched Matt Garza as he threw just 85 pitches before departing with two outs in the eighth, striking out just four batters and walking one.

"That was one hell of a game," Garza said. "We came up big at the end. That's awesome."

Garza held St. Louis to two runs in seven innings, and has allowed three earned runs or fewer in his last 14 home starts, the longest streak by a Cubs pitcher since Mark Prior had 16 in a row over the 2004 and 2005 seasons.

St. Louis grabbed the lead in the fourth after Skip Schumaker led off with an infield single and went to third on Matt Holliday's double down the left-field line. Schumaker scored on Carlos Beltran's groundout, and Holliday scored on Yadier Molina's sacrifice fly.

Garcia gave up a first-inning run when Alfonso Soriano's sacrifice fly scored Darwin Barney, but he limited Chicago to just four hits over his final 6 2-3 innings. He was aided by double plays in the fifth and sixth.

"[Garcia] was terrific," Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. "You look at the run early on, and that was from two infield hits. Whenever he did get in a little spot, he got that extra movement, double plays."

Darwin Barney singled twice, walked, and scored the Cubs' only run. Castro legged out an infield single in the first, increasing his hitting streak to 11 games. He's reached base in 56 of his last 57 games.

The Cubs went homerless for the ninth straight game, their longest drought since June 30 to July 13, 2007. Chicago is last in the majors with just five homers on the season, but on Monday, singles were enough.

"These are the kind of things you have to build on," LaHair said.

Notes

  • The Cubs added reliever Michael Bowden to the roster on Monday, two days after the righty was acquired with a player to be named later from the Red Sox for outfielder Marlon Byrd and cash.
  • An MRI on Cardinals outfielder Jon Jay's right shoulder revealed no structural damage. Jay injured the shoulder when he crashed into the fence on Thursday in St. Louis. Matheny said Jay may pinch-run during the series against the Cubs.
 
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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Former Cardinal Joe Mather's two-out, two-run single in the ninth inning rallies the Cubs to victory.  (AP)
Former Cardinal Joe Mather's two-out, two-run single in the ninth inning rallies the Cubs to victory. (AP)

Players of the Game
St. Louis

M. Holliday
AB 3
R 1
H 2
HR 0
RBI 0
Chicago

J. Mather
AB 3
R 0
H 2
HR 0
RBI 2
 

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St. Louis Cardinals
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Rafael Furcal, SS4010010 .362
Skip Schumaker, CF3110001 .500
   a- Shane Robinson, PH-CF0000100 .391
Matt Holliday, LF3120100 .216
Carlos Beltran, RF4001013 .279
David Freese, 3B3010020 .333
Yadier Molina, C3001000 .273
Matt Carpenter, 1B2000200 .268
    Jason Motte, P0000000 .000
Tyler Greene, 2B2000110 .212
Jaime Garcia, P3000013 .222
    Mitchell Boggs, P0000000 .000
    Daniel Descalso, 1B0000000 .209
Totals2725256  
a-walked for Schumaker in the 8th
Batting
2B - Matt Holliday (3, Garza)
SF - Yadier Molina (1)
RBI - Carlos Beltran (9), Yadier Molina (12)
CS - Skip Schumaker (1, 2nd base by Garza/Soto)
Team LOB - 5
Fielding
DP - Furcal-T. Greene-M. Carpenter, Furcal-T. Greene-M. Carpenter
E - Rafael Furcal (2, Misplayed grounder)
St. Louis Cardinals
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Jaime Garcia 7.2611140 2.49
Mitchell Boggs (H,5) 0.1000100 0.96
Jason Motte (BS,1; L,1-1) 0.2122210 4.05
WP - Jaime Garcia (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Jaime Garcia 85-61, Mitchell Boggs 10-5, Jason Motte 31-18
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jaime Garcia 11-6, Mitchell Boggs 1-0, Jason Motte 1-0
Batters Faced - Jaime Garcia 28, Mitchell Boggs 2, Jason Motte 5
Chicago Cubs
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
David DeJesus, RF4000024 .245
Darwin Barney, 2B3120101 .311
Starlin Castro, SS4010003 .358
Alfonso Soriano, LF3001010 .200
Jeff Baker, 1B3000000 .190
   a- Bryan LaHair, PH0100100 .361
Geovany Soto, C3100110 .128
Reed Johnson, CF3000011 .192
    Rafael Dolis, P0000000 .000
   b- Steve Clevenger, PH1000000 .526
Joe Mather, 3B3022100 .300
Matt Garza, P1010000 .111
    James Russell, P0000000 .000
    Tony Campana, CF1010000 .600
Totals2937345  
a-walked for Baker in the 9th
b-grounded out for Dolis in the 9th
Batting
SF - Alfonso Soriano (2)
SH - Matt Garza (1)
RBI - Alfonso Soriano (9), Joe Mather 2 (4)
2-OUT RBI - Joe Mather 2 (3)
SB - Tony Campana 2 (2, 2nd base off Boggs/Molina, 3rd base off Boggs/Molina)
CS - Starlin Castro (1, 2nd base by Garcia/Molina)
Team LOB - 6
Fielding
Outfield Assists - David DeJesus 1
DP - Castro-Barney, DeJesus-Baker
Chicago Cubs
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Matt Garza 7422350 3.38
James Russell 0.1000210 0.00
Rafael Dolis (W,1-1) 1.2100000 3.72
HBP - Freese (by Matt Garza)
WP - Matt Garza (1)
Pitches-Strikes - Matt Garza 108-65, James Russell 21-10, Rafael Dolis 12-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Matt Garza 7-7
Batters Faced - Matt Garza 27, James Russell 3, Rafael Dolis 4
Game Information
Attendance - 37794
Game Time - 2:54
Temperature - 44
Umpires - Home - Tim Tschida, First Base - Chris Conroy, Second Base - Jeff Nelson, Third Base - Bill Welke