Cubs Take Initial Series From Redbirds
The Cardinals started off the series the way they had hoped getting to the Cubs bullpen taking game one. However, late heroics from the middle of the Cub’s lineup allowed Chicago to take 2 of 3 from St. Louis before game 4 was postponed.
Wainwright won his second game in a row as the Cards used 5 extra base hits to take down the Cubbies 7-4 in the opening game of the series. Khalil Greene homered for the first time as a Cardinal in the 6 th inning off of Aaron Heilman to put the Cards up for good as Kyle McClellan recorded his 2 nd hold and Ryan Franklin earned his 2 nd save of the season.
Game 2 so a little bit more offense as the teams combined for 15 runs off of 22 hits. P.J. Walters made the start for the Cardinals in place of Chris Carpenter and pitched 4 innings giving up 3 earned runs on 6 hits. Ryan Ludwick and Bryan Barden both homered off of Carlos Zambrano, but Carlos would be let off the hook in the 8 th inning thanks to the pop of Alfonso Soriano. Cards reliever Chris Perez worked for the first time this season after being called up and it would be an outing to forget. Soriano drilled a 1-2 slider over the wall in left center to put the Cubs up 8-7 before Carlos Marmol would earn his 2 nd save by inducing a game ending double play off the bat of Khalil Greene.
The clubhouses didn’t know it, but the weather knew game 3 would be a rubber match before the teams meet up this weekend in St. Louis. Starters Kyle Lohse and Ryan Dempster came up with sub-par pitching performances each giving up 4 earned runs in 5 and 6 innings pitched, respectively. This one would go into extras tied 5-5 as the Cubs would bring up their big bats in the bottom of the 11 th. Dennys Reyes would get the ball for the Cardinals and would issue a walk to Alfonso Soriano. He would get Kosuke Fukudome to ground into a fielder’s choice before retiring Derek Lee on a fly out. This brought up one of the Cardinal killers in Aramis Ramirez. He got a look at a 90 mph fastball on the first pitch before taking the 2 nd consecutive one over the ivy wall in Wrigley allowing the Cubs to walk off with a 7-5 and a series win over NL Central rival St. Louis.
New York Mets (6-6) @ St. Louis Cardinals (8-5) Preview
Todd Wellemeyer (1-1) will face off against the pitcher the Redbirds took down in game 7 of the 2006 NLCS, Oliver Perez (1-1) at Busch Stadium. In the 2 nd game Joel Pineiro (2-0) looks to stay perfect against hard-throwing John Maine (0-1). The teams will complete the 3 game set as Kyle Lohse (2-0) looks to outlast Mets’ veteran Livan Hernandez (1-0) before the Cards welcome the Cubbies into town.
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By Zack Estes
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