|St. Louis (73-53) «||1||6||0||0||0||0||0||0||1||8||12||1|
MILWAUKEE -- Jake Westbrook didn't last long enough to earn the victory on Wednesday, but the light-hitting St. Louis pitcher used his bat to spark a six-run, second-inning outburst that led to a Cardinals victory against the Milwaukee win.
The Cardinals jumped out to a seven-run lead and then held on to win 8-6.
Westbrook, who entered the game hitting only .167 with two RBI this season, smacked a bases-loaded double into the left-center field gap that scored two runs, starting an onslaught that propelled the Cardinals a 7-0 lead.
"I'm happy to be able to contribute in that sense, especially with the bases loaded and nobody out and to put a good swing on the ball," Westbrook said.
Westbrook didn't fare as well on the mound, however. He fell one out short of earning this eighth victory of the year, giving up four earned runs and nine hits in 4 2/3 innings. He walked one and struck out one during a 75-pitch outing.
In his previous start on Aug. 16, when he threw a career-high 124 pitches, Westbrook gave up six earned runs in 6 2/3 innings.
"I still felt like I pitched a lot better than I have been in terms of throwing strikes and getting ahead of guys," Westbrook said. "I actually made some good pitches that they put some good swings on. Getting two quick outs in the fifth and not being able to finish it off is pretty frustrating for me.
"The bullpen came in and picked me up and finished it off, and the offense was great."
Carlos Beltran and Allen Craig hit towering home runs in the game-changing second inning. Matt Holliday also homered later in the game and Shane Robinson had three hits for the Cardinals, who remain close behind the Pittsburgh Pirates in the NL Central race.
"It was a big win," Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. "Those are the ones you've got to find a way to win, when you put that kind of offensive production up early."
After taking a one-run lead in the first inning on a double by Craig, the Cardinals torched Brewers starter Tom Gorzelanny (3-5) in the second.
"You make mistakes and you pay for them, especially against good-hitting teams," Gorzelanny said. "I left balls over the middle, [and made] bad pitch selection."
Following Matt Carpenter's sacrifice fly, Beltran launched a two-run shot that caromed off the center-field scoreboard. With two out, Craig hit a solo homer to right-center.
"We are happy that we were able to win the series," Beltran said. "That is basically what is important for us right now."
The Brewers cut into the lead in the third on a three-run homer by Aramis Ramirez, and then added two runs in the fifth.
Juan Francisco broke out of an 0-for-15 slump, during which he struck out 10 times, with a run-scoring single. Sean Halton drove in another run with a hit, cutting the deficit to 7-5 and chasing Westbrook.
"[Westbrook] started out pretty good, but for whatever reason they were finding the good part of the bat and finding holes," Matheny said.
Kevin Siegrist struck out pinch-hitter Jeff Bianchi with the bases loaded to end the fifth inning. Siegrist (2-1) recorded two outs to notch the victory. Four Cardinals relievers held the Brewers to one run over the final 5 1/3 innings to preserve the win.
Holliday's solo home run in the ninth extended the lead to 8-5.
Gorzelanny surrendered seven runs and 10 hits in 3 2/3 innings. He walked one and struck out five.
"He didn't command the ball that well early and then they also hit some pretty good pitches. We know they are a good hitting club, and when you don't hit your spots, they are going to put a good swing on it," Milwaukee manager Ron Roenicke said.
Khris Davis had a career-best three hits for Milwaukee.
"He keeps showing he can hang in there. He works the count well, which I really like," Roenicke said. "He's an aggressive swinger, but he's not a hacker. He doesn't just go up there and swing at everything. He swings at the pitch he wants to swing at."
|Allen Craig is a popular man in the dugout after hitting a towering HR for the Cards, who stay close in the NL Central race. (USATSI)|
|Players of the Game|
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|St. Louis Cardinals|
|Matt Carpenter, 2B-3B||4||0||1||1||0||2||0||.311|
|Carlos Beltran, RF||5||2||2||2||0||2||0||.307|
|Matt Holliday, LF||5||1||1||1||0||2||2||.282|
|Allen Craig, 1B||4||1||2||2||1||1||1||.310|
|Yadier Molina, C||4||0||0||0||0||0||2||.332|
|David Freese, 3B||4||1||2||0||0||0||0||.266|
|Shane Robinson, CF-LF||4||1||3||0||0||0||0||.276|
|Pete Kozma, SS||2||1||0||0||2||0||1||.220|
|Jake Westbrook, P||3||1||1||2||0||1||3||.182|
|Daniel Descalso, 3B||1||0||0||0||0||1||0||.252|
|2B - Allen Craig (27, Gorzelanny), Jake Westbrook (2, Gorzelanny)|
|HR - Carlos Beltran (22, Gorzelanny), Matt Holliday (16, Gonzalez), Allen Craig (12, Gorzelanny)|
|SF - Matt Carpenter (6)|
|RBI - Matt Carpenter (63), Carlos Beltran 2 (67), Matt Holliday (62), Allen Craig 2 (90), Jake Westbrook 2 (4)|
|2-OUT RBI - Matt Holliday (25), Allen Craig 2 (40)|
|SB - Matt Carpenter (2, 2nd base off Gorzelanny/Lucroy), Shane Robinson (4, 2nd base off Hand/Lucroy)|
|Team LOB - 5|
|DP - Westbrook-Kozma-Craig|
|E - Pete Kozma (7, Misplayed grounder)|
|St. Louis Cardinals|
|Kevin Siegrist (W,2-1)||0.2||1||0||0||1||2||0||0.69|
|Seth Maness (H,13)||1.1||1||0||0||1||1||0||2.03|
|Trevor Rosenthal (H,26)||1||1||0||0||1||1||0||2.58|
|Edward Mujica (S,33)||1.1||2||1||1||0||1||1||1.77|
|HBP - Halton (by Jake Westbrook), Davis (by Edward Mujica)|
|Pitches-Strikes - Jake Westbrook 75-48, Kevin Siegrist 18-11, Seth Maness 26-17, Trevor Rosenthal 22-11, Edward Mujica 21-16|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Jake Westbrook 8-5, Seth Maness 2-1, Edward Mujica 2-1|
|Batters Faced - Jake Westbrook 25, Kevin Siegrist 4, Seth Maness 6, Trevor Rosenthal 5, Edward Mujica 7|
|Scooter Gennett, 2B||6||0||1||0||0||2||3||.312|
|Jean Segura, SS||6||1||1||0||0||1||2||.306|
|Jonathan Lucroy, C||5||1||2||0||0||0||2||.289|
|Aramis Ramirez, 3B||3||2||2||3||2||0||1||.260|
|Khris Davis, LF||4||1||3||0||0||0||2||.324|
|Juan Francisco, 1B||5||0||1||1||0||1||4||.239|
|Sean Halton, RF||4||0||1||1||0||1||1||.218|
|Logan Schafer, CF||3||1||2||1||2||0||0||.222|
|Tom Gorzelanny, P||1||0||0||0||0||0||2||.063|
|Donovan Hand, P||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||.091|
|a-Jeff Bianchi, PH||1||0||0||0||0||1||3||.246|
|b-Norichika Aoki, PH||1||0||0||0||0||0||2||.278|
|Yuniesky Betancourt, 1B||1||0||1||0||0||0||0||.207|
|a-struck out for Hand in the 5th|
|b-flied out for Axford in the 7th|
|2B - Jean Segura (18, Siegrist), Yuniesky Betancourt (11, Mujica)|
|3B - Jonathan Lucroy (5, Westbrook)|
|HR - Aramis Ramirez (7, Westbrook), Logan Schafer (3, Mujica)|
|RBI - Aramis Ramirez 3 (31), Juan Francisco (47), Sean Halton (6), Logan Schafer (24)|
|2-OUT RBI - Juan Francisco (9), Sean Halton (3)|
|Team LOB - 14|
|DP - Gennett-Francisco, Gennett-Francisco-Ramirez-Gennett-Francisco|
|E - Juan Francisco (17, Throwing)|
|Tom Gorzelanny (L,3-5)||3.2||10||7||7||1||5||2||3.60|
|Pitches-Strikes - Tom Gorzelanny 79-56, Donovan Hand 20-12, John Axford 21-13, Burke Badenhop 8-5, Mike Gonzalez 20-12|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Tom Gorzelanny 3-2, Donovan Hand 2-2, John Axford 4-1, Burke Badenhop 1-1|
|Batters Faced - Tom Gorzelanny 21, Donovan Hand 6, John Axford 6, Burke Badenhop 3, Mike Gonzalez 4|
|Attendance - 37028|
|Game Time - 3:18|
|Temperature - 84|
|Umpires - Home - Marvin Hudson, First Base - Wally Bell, Second Base - Clint Fagan, Third Base - Marty Foster|