Pujols kicked off a 4-for-4 night with a solo homer and the
Cardinals beat the Brewers 5-2 on Thursday to avoid a three-game
St. Louis pulled within four games of NL Central-leading
Milwaukee, which has won 13 of 15. The Cardinals are the only team
to beat the Brewers during their hot streak.
Pujols almost doubled his hit total for the season against
Milwaukee. The big first baseman entered with just five hits in 42
at-bats against the Cardinals' main division rival, but he put that
slide behind him with a drive in the first against Yovani Gallardo
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"(There were) just some comments that were made from a couple of
players," Milwaukee manager Ron Roenicke said. "They were telling me
to keep one of our players quiet."
Rafael Furcal got St. Louis off to a fast start with a leadoff
drive to right in the first. After Gallardo fanned Jon Jay, Pujols
hit a tying drive over the wall in center.
St. Louis took its first lead of the series in the third with
some help from the Brewers. Second baseman Felipe Lopez booted
Furcal's ground ball leading off the inning, allowing him to reach
first. Furcal was forced at second by Jay, but Pujols and Berkman
followed with singles to plate Jay.
That same combination worked again in the fifth when Jay singled
to right with two out, stole second and scored on Pujols' single to
center. Pujols moved to third on Berkman's single to right and came
home on a wild pitch to make it 5-2.
"Obviously, it's a nice win," Carpenter said. "We needed this
one. I went out and gave up the two early and we got the two right
back and started over again. That was key."
Gallardo gave up five runs, four earned, and seven hits in five
"I just left the ball up," he said. "That first inning, a
curveball up in the zone (to Pujols). He's a good hitter. He's going
to take advantage of those mistakes."
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