[April 01, 2014]CINCINNATI — As the St. Louis
Cardinals players exchanged postgame handshakes following Monday
afternoon's victory over the Reds, left fielder Matt Holliday echoed the
sentiments of his teammates, shouting "Yadi wins!"
Holliday was referring to catcher Yadier Molina, who did
everything well while leading his team to an Opening Day victory.
Molina hit a solo home run in the seventh inning, and right-hander
Adam Wainwright pitched seven scoreless innings, lifting the
Cardinals to a 1-0 victory over the Cincinnati Reds at Great
American Ball Park.
Molina hit a game-deciding homer, but it was two defensive gems that
most impressed his teammates. He quickly gathered balls hit in front
of the plate and converted them into inning-ending outs, including a
double play in the third on a grounder by Reds first baseman Joey
"He's the best I've ever seen at that position," Wainwright said. "I
don't think you can replace what he does. We were on the same page
from the first pitch. He's such a stabilizing presence for us."
Wainwright (1-0) earned his 100th career victory by allowing three
hits and striking out nine.
"I didn't know if I'd ever get to 100, but I'm glad I'm there," said
Wainwright. "I'm not a guy who throws 100 mph. I'm the 'crafty
righty' now. Getting my 100th win is a notch in my belt."
Right-hander Trevor Rosenthal earned the save with a 1-2-3 ninth
inning. The Cardinals won despite committing three errors.
Reds right-hander Johnny Cueto (0-1) allowed just three hits and
struck out eight in seven innings, but also gave up Molina's homer.
Cueto issued one walk.
"We're accustomed to seeing that kind of pitching from Johnny," Reds
manager Bryan Price said. "He was terrific today. He's healthy. He
was free and easy letting it go. He gave us a chance to win."
Cueto retired eight consecutive Cardinals batters following first
baseman Matt Adams' second-inning single. The only two hits allowed
by Cueto through five innings were by Adams, who doubled down the
third base line with the Reds' infield shifted to the right side in
"You could see the type of swings our guys were taking against him,"
Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said of Cueto. "He's a top-level
pitcher. So is Wainwright. I'm sure unbiased baseball fans can
appreciate a well-pitched baseball game like we saw out there
Third baseman Todd Frazier had the only two hits for Cincinnati
through four innings off Wainwright, whose off-speed pitches kept
the Reds off balance for much of the game.
"My breaking stuff was sharp," Wainwright said. "I was able to throw
everything for strikes. The Reds have a very good lineup, a deep
lineup. They can hurt you in a lot of ways. My thought process was
the same in spring training, just keep it simple and execute."
With one out in the seventh, Molina launched Cueto's first pitch an
estimated 368 feet into the left field stands, putting St. Louis
Molina's homer was all the offense the Cardinals would need, but
Cincinnati had its chances.
The Reds twice had the tying run on third base in the eighth inning
but could not score.
Second baseman Brandon Phillips was retired in a rundown between
third and home after leaving on contact on right fielder Jay Bruce's
ground ball to first. Votto was left stranded at third when
right-hander Carlos Martinez fanned Frazier looking to end the
"First and third, nobody out, not able to score ...," Price said.
"We didn't get the big hit we needed there."
The Cardinals' shutout was keyed by preventing Cincinnati speedster
Billy Hamilton from reaching base. Hamilton went 0-for-4 with four
"I'm not concerned about Billy," Price said. "I saw him going
against Adam Wainwright, who's pretty good.
"We have expectations to play winning baseball here. We came up
NOTES: Monday's game was the 138th Opening Day in the storied
history of the Reds franchise. ... Big Red Machine SS Dave
Concepcion and Hall of Fame SS Barry Larkin threw simultaneous
ceremonial first pitches prior to the game. ... The Reds began the
season with eight players on the disabled list, their highest total
since 2007. ... Bryan Price made his debut as Reds manager after
spending the previous four seasons as pitching coach. "It can be a
little overwhelming if you allow it to be," Price said of his debut.
"Going through this for the first time as a manager is special." ...
Jhonny Peralta became the eighth different Opening Day shortstop in
eight seasons for St. Louis. He went 0-for-4. ... The Reds were shut
out on Opening Day for the first time in 61 years.