Offense bails out Lackey in 9-6 win against Cubs

Offense bails out Lackey in 9-6 win against Cubs

Credit: Getty Images

ST. LOUIS, MO - AUGUST 31: Starter John Lackey #41 of the St. Louis Cardinals pitches against the Chicago Cubs in the first inning at Busch Stadium on August 31, 2014 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Dilip Vishwanat/Getty Images)

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by Elizabeth Eisele/ BaseballStL

KMOV.com

Posted on August 31, 2014 at 12:54 PM

Updated Sunday, Aug 31 at 5:21 PM

(BaseballStL) -- Trevor Rosenthal entered the ninth inning with a three run lead over the Cubs, but the Cardinals' closer made things interesting.

He walked the first batter he saw, Starlin Castro, but he was able to strand him at first by getting two pop ups and a line drive to end the game.

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In the eighth inning, it was once again Matt Holliday who delivered the go ahead RBI with two outs to give the Redbirds their first lead of the afternoon. 

Pete Kozma, who came in the game when Kolten Wong was hurt trying to dive for a fly ball, began the inning with a hit to the left field gap for a double. Daniel Descalso attempted to sacrifice him to third, but he popped the ball in the air. The ball dropped and pitcher Carlos Villanueva didn't throw it to first in time giving the Cards runners on first and third with no outs.

Pinch hitter Matt Adams struck out and the Cubs opted to intentionally walk Matt Carpenter. Randal Grichuk then struck out, but Holliday picked him up with a line drive that caught Villanueva on the foot and rolled towards left field to score Kozma and Descalso to give the Cards an 8-6 lead.

Jhonny Peralta also singled to score Carpenter before the inning was over.

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The Cardinals came roaring back with more two out RBI, this time off the bat of Jhonny Peralta.

With one out, Matt Carpenter earned his second walk of the game. Randal Grichuk struck out, but reliever Pefro Strop hit Matt Holliday to put runners on for Peralta who then delivered with a shot to the right field gap that plated Carpenter.

Then Yadier Molina, back after having thumb surgery seven weeks ago, poked a ball that got past Javier Baez at second and scored Holliday to tie the game at six.

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The Cubs were able to get one back in the seventh inning on a solo shot off lefty specialist Randy Choate.

After getting the first out of the seventh inning, Mike Matheny took John Lackey out for Choate. Choate struck out Luis Valbuena, but gave up a 411 feet shot to switch hitter Arismendy Alcantara to extend the Cubs lead to 6-4.

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For the third time in two games, Matt Holliday crushed a ball into center field as he grabbed the Cardinals first run of the game.

With his count at 2-0, Holliday sent an 88 mph fastball 432 feet over the center field wall for his 16th homer of the season.

Holliday homered in back-to-back at-bats Saturday night and the home runs brings his season RBI total to 75.

The in the fifth inning, teammate Kolten Wong got in on the home run fun by hitting a homer 409 feet to right center to pull the Cardinals within three runs of the Cubs.

Daniel Descalso then earned a free pass and was sacrificed over to second by John Lackey. Matt Carpenter then hit a long fly ball into deep center. Cubs center fielder Arismendy Alcantara couldn't get there as the ball glanced off the end of his glove as Descalso scored.

Holliday then added his 76th RBI with a long fly ball to left field that fell just short of his second homer of the game, but still scored Carpenter as the Cards pulled within a run.

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John Lackey pitched himself out of a jam in the first inning with bases loaded and one out. But the Cubs continued to come in the second and a throwing error eventually gave the Cubs a 5-0 lead.

Chris Valaika and John Baker walked and singled off Lackey, respectively. Then Travis Wood laid down a sacrifice bunt that Lackey air mailed way over Kolten Wong's head at first to allow Valaika to score. A two RBI single from Cubs lead off man Chris Coghlan plated two more runs to extend their lead with no one out.

But Javier Baez grounded into a 6-4-3 double play to clear the bases of runers for Starlin Castro. But Castro extended the inning with a sinlge into center field that brought up Luis Valbuena who blasted a 388 feet shot to right field to give the Cubs a 5-0 lead.

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