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St. Louis built an 11-5 lead before the biggest scare came when Pujols was shaken up after tagging out Braun in the fifth inning. The three-time MVP fell hard on his right forearm on a close play at first base.
"I got spiked. I didn't feel too good but as long as I can walk I'm playing in that game," Pujols said. "It's the postseason. Nothing hurts. You don't think about it. You think about making a play. If you got hurt, hey at least you got hurt trying something hard."
The Cardinals took control of this series beginning in Game 2 by jumping out to early leads and letting the bullpen lead the way.
La Russa called on his relievers 28 times in the NLCS and Jackson's start was the shortest of the postseason for the rotation, which finished the NLCS with a 7.66 ERA. St. Louis became the first team to win a postseason series without a starter reaching the sixth inning, according to STATS LLC.
Freese gave his teammates credit while accepting the MVP award.
"I wish we could make eight or nine of these and give them to our bullpen. They're the reason why we won this series," he said.
Corey Hart, Rickie Weeks and Jonathan Lucroy all homered for the Brewers, who won a major league-best 57 home games at Miller Park this season and four straight in the postseason before losing Game 2 to the Cardinals.
The Brewers' biggest hitters -- Braun, Fielder and Weeks -- finished 1 for 12 in Game 6. Fielder, the All-Star game MVP and the reason St. Louis will start at home on Wednesday, received a standing ovation in his final at-bat in the eighth. He grounded out and slowly walked back to the dugout with his head down.
"Obviously I envisioned us winning the World Series, but that didn't happen," Fielder said. "We had a great year as a team. Unfortunately we didn't get to where we wanted to go. But still some great moments and great memories in there. Like I said, this year has been awesome."
It was the two ugly defensive performances that will likely linger for Milwaukee, which committed four errors in a 7-1 loss in Game 5 and added three more in Game 6.
"You can't get away with mistakes to them and we made way too many mistakes," manager Ron Roenicke said.
Struggling starter Shaun Marcum never really gave Milwaukee a chance and was hurt by defensive plays that weren't ruled errors.
In the first, Jon Jay singled with one out and stole second when Weeks couldn't hold onto Lucroy's low throw. Marcum believed he had strike three on Pujols, who ended up walking.
Lance Berkman singled for the second hit in 18 career at-bats against Marcum to drive in the first run, and center fielder Nyjer Morgan made an ill-advised throw to third that let Berkman reach second.
Marcum saved a run by grabbing Holliday's dribbler and flipping it out of his glove to Lucroy to get Pujols at the plate, but Freese homered on the next pitch to make it 4-0 and extend his postseason hitting streak to 10 games.
"We believe," Freese said. "I think that's what you've got to do in this game. We got a group of guys with some talent, desire, and just a ton of heart."
Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
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