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St. Louis at Houston

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St. Louis (4-2)020033000871
Houston (4-2) «0011202028122

Cardinals 8, Astros 8

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KISSIMMEE, Fla. (AP) - Joe Kelly remembered his last game appearance, when there was a lot more had stake.

Pitching for the first time since the NL championship series, Kelly opened his bid for a spot in the St. Louis Cardinals' starting rotation with two hitless innings in Friday's 8-8 tie against the Houston Astros.

"There were no people calling me names out there today," Kelly said. "Warming up today in the bullpen, we had Cardinal fans down there, cheering you on, instead of people using derogatory terms and just screaming out hate and blasphemy towards you."

Among three candidates to replace the injured Chris Carpenter in the Cardinals' rotation, Kelly walked one hitter in each inning. He's competing with Shelby Miller and Trevor Rosenthal, and was the last of the three to pitch in an exhibition game.

"For the past three days I've been reminded by everyone in the clubhouse: `Are you ever going to pitch?"' Kelly said. "I think it made me even more anxious to get out here. I'm one of the last guys to even throw, but it was good to get out there.

"I'm not too happy about my walks. I felt maybe a tad rusty, but I went out there and got my ground balls. That's part of my game and that's what I try to do."

Kelly, a 24-year-old right-hander, was 5-7 with a 3.53 in 16 starts and eight relief appearances as a rookie last year.

"Everyone, of course, wants to start in the big leagues," he said. "That's ultimately what my goal is to do, so I guess that's my preference. I'm happy I'm even given a chance to get that role."

Adron Chambers, Daniel Descalso and Pete Kozma had two hits and drove in two runs each for the Cardinals, who have won five straight.

Chris Carter homered for the Astros, a fifth-inning drive off closer Jason Motte. Brandon Barnes and Brandon Lair also homered for Houston.

"I'm excited to have this opportunity here, either to play first base or outfield or DH, whatever I can do to just play every day," said Carter, who hit 16 home runs in 67 games for Oakland last season.

Carter is among at least eight Astros outfielders competing for starting spots.

"That's why we're giving everybody an equal number of at-bats," manager Bo Porter said. "We want to give everybody an opportunity throughout the first three weeks."

Houston starter Bud Norris struck out one and walked one in three innings, allowing Descalso's two-run single in the second.

With Houston trailing by two runs in the ninth, Brandon Laird homered off Victor Marte leading off, his second home run in two days. Rene Garcia singled with one out and, after a throwing error by shortstop Ryan Jackson, pinch-runner Delino DeShields scored on Marte's wild pitch.

NOTES: Cardinals manager Mike Matheny was not with the team because he has flulike symptoms. ... Jose Veras, Houston's likely closer, pitched a 1-2-3 fourth with a pair of called strikeouts in his final appearance before joining the Dominican Republic for the World Baseball Classic.

 
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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Players of the Game
St. Louis

D. Descalso
AB 2
R 2
H 2
HR 0
RBI 2
Houston

B. Laird
AB 2
R 2
H 2
HR 1
RBI 1
 

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St. Louis Cardinals
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Jon Jay, CF4010001 .333
    Justin Christian, CF1000010 .333
Oscar Taveras, DH4001000 .263
David Freese, 3B3000011 .444
   a- Ryan Jackson, PH-SS1000000 .182
Matt Adams, 1B2100100 .417
   b- Tony Cruz, PH-1B1000000 .182
Shane Robinson, RF4210010 .533
Daniel Descalso, 2B2222100 .357
    Kolten Wong, 2B1000000 .300
Rob Johnson, C3100003 .000
    Audry Perez, C1000000 .000
Adron Chambers, LF3113000 .267
Pete Kozma, SS-3B4122010 .353
Totals3487824  
a-grounded out for Freese in the 7th
b-grounded out for Adams in the 7th
Batting
2B - Shane Robinson (3, Norris), Pete Kozma (2, Cedeno)
HR - Adron Chambers (1, Clemens)
SH - Adron Chambers (1)
RBI - Oscar Taveras (6), Daniel Descalso 2 (3), Adron Chambers 3 (5), Pete Kozma 2 (4)
2-OUT RBI - Adron Chambers 3 (3)
Team LOB - 2
Fielding
DP - Kozma-Adams
E - Ryan Jackson (1, Throwing)
St. Louis Cardinals
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Joe Kelly 2000200 0.00
John Gast (BS,1) 2322111 9.00
Jason Motte (H,2) 1222111 9.00
Marc Rzepczynski (H,2) 1100200 3.00
Jorge Rondon (H,2) 1422020 9.00
Eduardo Sanchez (H,2) 1000010 0.00
Victor Marte (BS,1) 1221001 6.00
WP - Marc Rzepczynski (1), Victor Marte (2)
Pitches-Strikes - Joe Kelly 14-6, John Gast 15-11, Jason Motte 18-9, Marc Rzepczynski 11-3, Jorge Rondon 11-11, Eduardo Sanchez 5-5, Victor Marte 12-8
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Joe Kelly 3-3, John Gast 2-3, Jason Motte 2-0, Marc Rzepczynski 2-0, Victor Marte 3-1
Batters Faced - Joe Kelly 8, John Gast 10, Jason Motte 6, Marc Rzepczynski 5, Jorge Rondon 7, Eduardo Sanchez 3, Victor Marte 6
Houston Astros
HittersABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Tyler Greene, SS2110100 .091
    Jacob Elmore, SS1000110 .273
Jose Altuve, 2B3000002 .200
    Jose Martinez, 2B2000001 .375
Carlos Pena, 1B2000112 .182
    Nate Freiman, 1B2000010 .294
Chris Carter, LF3112002 .154
    Brandon Laird, 3B2221000 .500
Brett Wallace, 3B2110100 .429
    George Springer, PR-CF2110000 .500
Rick Ankiel, RF1000111 .600
    Rene Garcia, C3021001 .400
    Delino Deshields Jr., PR0100000 .167
Fernando Martinez, DH2000002 .222
   a- Jason Jaramillo, PH-DH3020000 .375
    Robbie Grossman, PR-DH0000000 .455
Carlos Corporan, C2011001 .625
    Jimmy Paredes, PR-RF1001101 .083
Brandon Barnes, CF-LF5111015 .333
Totals38812765  
a-singled for F. Martinez in the 6th
Batting
2B - Tyler Greene (1, Motte), Brandon Laird (1, Rondon), Brett Wallace (2, Gast)
HR - Chris Carter (1, Motte), Brandon Laird (2, Marte), Brandon Barnes (2, Gast)
SF - Jimmy Paredes (1)
RBI - Chris Carter 2 (2), Brandon Laird (5), Rene Garcia (1), Carlos Corporan (3), Jimmy Paredes (2), Brandon Barnes (2)
2-OUT RBI - Chris Carter 2 (2), Carlos Corporan (2)
SB - George Springer (1, 2nd base off Motte/Johnson)
Team LOB - 10
Fielding
DP - T. Greene-Altuve-Pena
E - Jacob Elmore (1, Misplayed grounder), Brett Wallace (2, Throwing)
Houston Astros
PitchersIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Bud Norris 3222110 5.40
Jose Veras 1000020 6.00
Xavier Cedeno 0.2231100 3.38
Paul Clemens 1.1330001 2.70
Joshua Zeid 1000000 3.00
Rhiner Cruz 1000000 0.00
Josh Fields 1000010 0.00
Pitches-Strikes - Bud Norris 17-13, Jose Veras 7-7, Xavier Cedeno 9-5, Paul Clemens 13-10, Joshua Zeid 3-3, Rhiner Cruz 3-3, Josh Fields 5-5
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Bud Norris 5-2, Xavier Cedeno 3-0, Paul Clemens 1-4, Joshua Zeid 3-0, Rhiner Cruz 2-1, Josh Fields 1-1
Batters Faced - Bud Norris 11, Jose Veras 3, Xavier Cedeno 6, Paul Clemens 8, Joshua Zeid 3, Rhiner Cruz 3, Josh Fields 3
Game Information
Attendance - 2825
Game Time - 3:11
Temperature - 59
Umpires - Home - Hunter Wendelstedt, First Base - Jeff Nelson, Second Base - Ed Hickox, Third Base - Jeff Gosney