Cards draw on reserves to club Cubs

2014-04-12T17:02:00Z 2014-04-13T07:29:05Z Cards draw on reserves to club CubsBy Rick Hummel 314-340-8196

Cardinals reserve players had been just two for 28 before today's game with the Chicago Cubs. But they were four for 10 today with three runs batted in as the Cardinals blasted the Cubs, 10-4, at Busch Stadium.

Daniel Descalso, who had been hitless in 10 at-bats, singled and drove in a run in a four-run second and started a five-run explosion in the fourth with a double.

Jon Jay, like Descalso a big part of the Cardinals' playoff clubs in 2011-12-13, doubled home two runs to cap the five-run fourth besides making a sterling, over-the-shoulder catch in deep center field. Shane Robinson also had his first hit, a pinch single in the seventh.

Adam Wainwright, making his first home appearance this season, allowed a home run to Chicago's Junior Lake on the first pitch he threw but wound up fanning eight over seven innings in gaining his second win.

"He's an aggressive hitter," said Wainwright, who posted his 101st career win. "I should have known he he was swinging there."

The Cubs then parlayed three doubles for two runs in the sixth.  

"Extra base hits are how you score runs and middle of the plate (pitches) is how you give up extra-base hits," said Wainwright.  "I can solve that." 

Wainwright is only 3-6 against Chicago at Busch Stadium but he is 6-0 against them on the road. 

Randy Choate and Seth Maness each pitched a scoreless innings in relief, totalling three strikeouts. 

The Cardinals scored in double figures for the first time this season.

"It was nice to to get some runs for Adam and let him do his thing," said manager Mike Matheny. The Cardinals had scored two runs for Wainwright in his first two starts, one a 1-0 win and the other a 2-1 loss.

"This hitting thing is a hard deal," said Matheny. "They look like they're getting closer.

"I think this is the kind of team we have. We can throw up a huge offensive production just about any time.

Five-run fourth blows game open 

Reserve infielder Daniel Descalso doubled to start it and reserve outfielder Jon Jay delivered a two-run single to finish off a five-run fourth inning against the Chicago Cubs and Carlos Villanueva to blow open today's game at Busch Stadium.

After Descalso's second hit of the day and season, pitcher Adam Wainwright put down a sacrifice bunt and first baseman Anthony Rizzo's throw to third was too late to get Descalso.

Matt Carpenter's single to center scored a run, as did Kolen Wong's, sending Carpenter to third. Wong stole second and Carpenter then scored on Matt Holliday's bouncer to third baseman Luis Valbuena, who could not throw out Carpenter at the plate.

Matt Adams popped up and, after an intentional walk to Yadier Molina, Allen Craig fanned. But Jay's hit then plated the fourth and fifth runs of the inning.

Cardinals starter Adam Wainwright fanned eight over his seven-inning stint. That gave Wainwright 24 strikeouts in his first 21 innings this season although the Cubs peppered him for doubles by Valbuena, Nate Schierholtz and Ryan Sweeney for two runs in the sixth to cut the Cardinals' lead to 9-4.  

Matt Holliday doubled and came around on two infield outs in the Cardinals' sixth to make it 10-4.  Holliday then speared John Baker's liner which seemed as if it would go well over his head and into left center field in the seventh. 

Adams' HR sparks four-run second 

Matt Adams already had five doubles in his first 10 games with the Cardinals this season. He added his first home run, a liner over the right-field wall off Chicago starter Carlos Villanueva, to lead off the second inning today at Busch Stadium and tie the game at 1-1.

Adams clouted 17 homers in 296 at-bats last year in his rookie season.

The Cardinals proceeded to add three more runs in the inning as Daniel Descalso and pitcher Adam Wainwright both drove in their first runs of the season, Descalso with his first hit in 11 at-bats and Wainwright with his second hit.

After Adams' homer, Yadier Molina beat out an infield  tapper which third baseman Luis Valbuena couldn't handle with a barehand attempt. Allen Craig, hitting .088, skimmed a single to right, just missing Molina.

Jon Jay struck out but Descalso rescued him with a single to center. When first baseman Anthony Rizzo, in cutoff position, was unable to scoop center fielder Ryan Sweeney's throw toward the plate, the runners moved to third and second.

Wainwright fouled off a squeeze bunt attempt and then singled to left. Matt Carpenter knocked in the fourth run of the inning on another infield hit, giving the Cardinals six safeties for the inning.

Jay didn't hit safely in the big inning but he took one away with an over-the-shoulder grab off Valbuena before banging into the center-field wall to end the Cubs' third.

In the Cardinals' third, Jay thought he had a run-scoring single as he was ruled to have beaten shortstop Starlin Castro's throw to first after Castro had made a diving stop to his left. But Cubs manager Rick Renteria successfully challenged Jerry Layne's call and Jay was called out to end the inning.

Wainwright permitted a run in the fourth on a single by Rizzo, Nate Schierholtz's double (his fifth hit of the series) and an infield out.  But the Cardinals still led, 4-2, into the home fourth.

Lake homers on first pitch 

Adam Wainwright's first pitch was tossed at 1:17 p.m. today. It went 395 feet into the left field seats, off the bat of Chicago Cubs leadoff man Junior Lake and the Cubs had a 1-0 lead over the Cardinals at Busch Stadium.

Wainwright entered the game with a 2-6 mark at Busch against the Cubs in his career.

Cubs starter Carlos Villanueva took a 5-4 career mark into his outing today. 

Rick is a baseball writer/columnist at the Post-Dispatch 

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Cardinal Beat

Baseball writers Derrick Goold and Rick Hummel cover the Cardinals for the Post-Dispatch and They'll provide daily Cardinals updates here, from the start of spring training through the end of the season and beyond.