The St. Louis Cardinals combined power with quality pitching to defeat the Los Angeles Dodgers 11-2 on a warm spring night at Dodger Stadium. Kyle Lohse surrendered only two runs and six hits in 7 1/3 innings and the Redbirds pounded out 19 hits, including eight for extra bases as St. Louis continued their offensive barrage of Chavez Ravine.
Lance Berkman began the secong-inning scoring for the Redbirds with a long solo home run deep into the field level seats in right field. Later that inning after two singles put runner on the corners, Jon Garland's first career balk - on a controversial call - plated the second run of the inning. Ryan Theriot drove in the third run with a single that would have been a double, but he slid beyond the bag and Juan Uribe tagged him out to end the inning.
Garland stated after the game that he "still doesn't think it was a balk" and Don Mattingly added that pitching coach Rick Honeycutt "looked at it (replays) and didn't see anything." Mattingly also said that a balk call is "one of those things where you can't really go on the field to question [it]".
Berkman added another prodigious blast off Garland halfway up the right field bleachers in the fourth inning. The Dodger starter escaped further damage by striking out Theriot, stranding two runners, but he was removed after Colby Rasmus struck his second (of three) sharp double of the night to lead off the fifth.
But Kenley Jansen did not provide instant relief, yielding a tremendous two-run blast by Albert Pujols before striking out the side while allowing two more hits. Pujols continued his feast on Dodger pitching by driving a solo home run over the center field wall off Blake Hawksworth in the seventh inning.
Garland, making his first start of the year after beginning the season on the disabled list, was not effective, leaving the game without recording an out in the fourth inning, and throwing 83 pitches in the process. Garland said that he "felt pretty good" tonight but that he had "pitches catching too much of the plate."
The Dodgers scored two runs in the fourth inning. Matt Kemp singled in Casey Blake, who had doubled and moved to third on Andre Ethier's swinging bunt for an infield single. James Loney followed with a sharp line drive that found Pujols' mitt, but was dropped, leaving Kemp in no man's land for an easy force play. A wild pitch brought Ethier home with the second and final run for Los Angeles.
- Garland was the active leader in most career innings pitched without a balk, having pitched 2030 2/3 innings before being called for one tonight. The new active leader is old friend Randy Wolf with 1914 2/3 balkless innings for his career.
- Ethier's swinging bunt single in the fourth inning extended his hitting streak to twelve games.
- Kemp is now 7-13 (.538) with runners in scoring position.
- Pujols was the only baserunner allowed by Hawksworth in his two innings of work.
- The six strikeouts recorded by Lohse gave him 1000 for his career.
- Lance Cormier pitched; he still wasn't good.
- Every Cardinal starter, including the pitcher, reached base tonight.
- The Redbirds have scored 20 runs on 35 hits in the first two games of this series, with their two wins giving them 1000 wins over the Dodgers in franchise history.
- The Dodgers have hit eight home runs this season. Pujols and Berkman combined to hit half that total tonight.
WP - Kyle Lohse (2-1): 7 1/3 IP, 6 hits, 2 runs, 1 walks, 6 strikeouts
LP - Jon Garland (0-1): 4+ IP, 9 hits, 5 runs, 0 walks, 2 strikeouts, 2 HR allowed
Sv - None