(BaseballStL) — St. Louis hitters started quietly in the ninth, but refused to make it an easy Tuesday night for the Rays.
Peter Bourjos took a called third, and Tony Cruz followed suit for the second out, but Oscar Taveras pinch hit in the nine slot, eventually smacking a single on the eighth pitch of his at bat.
Matt Carpenter coaxed an eight-pitch walk, and with two on, the remaining Cardinal fans came back to life.
Kolten Wong gave his 2-2 pitch a ride, but didnt get enough, ending the game with a fly ball to right field.
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The Rays pushed the lead back to five runs when Evan Longoria punched a two out homer over the wall in left field.
It was his 12th of the season and cleared the wall by a foot, but it marked the seventh Tampa Bay run.
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After two uneventful innings, the Cardinals tapped Jason Motte for a second inning of work in the top of the ninth.
Despite getting a man on in both the seventh and eighth, St. Louis couldn’t sustain any momentum at the plate.
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Matt Holliday woke Busch Stadium up in the sixth with a 424 foot laser home run to left center.
After a blooper down the line was ruled foul earlier in the at bat, Mike Matheny challenged the call hoping to get his left fielder aboard. The call was confirmed, and Holliday responded by blasting a no-doubter to move the score to 6-2.
Matt Adams followed by ripping a single of his own, and Allen Craig followed a Jhonny Peralta strikeout with an eight-pitch walk.
The free pass was enough to chase Odorizzi from the game, bringing Jeff Beliveau out of the bullpen. The Cardinals countered with a change of their own, giving Peter Bourjos a crack in place of Jon Jay. He was felled by a backdoor curve, ending the inning with two men on.
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After both offenses quieted considerably for two frames following the 1-1 tie, it was the Rays who got back to scoring in the fifth.
A leadoff walk to Kevin Kiermaier was made worse when Adam Wainwright made an error on Ben Zobrist’s tapper, putting two men on with one out.
Matt Joyce gave the Rays the lead with an RBI double, and Evan Longoria joined him and Zobrist on base when he was hit by the first pitch of his at bat.
Things worsened when Wainwright walked Loney with the bases full, giving Tampa Bay a free run to make it 3-1.
The game broke open when Yunel Escobar shot a ball into the right field corner and it hopped the wall for a two-run ground rule double.
With men at second and third, Jose Molina stepped in hoping to add to an already fruitful Tuesday.
on the fifth pitch, he grounded out to third, scoring James Loney and pushing the lead to 6-1.
A walk to Odorizzi was the final straw, chasing Wainwright from the game with runners at the corners and two outs in the fifth.
It was his second shortest outing of the season, and pushed his ERA to 2.02.
Seth Maness came in to get the final out, but the top of the fifth closed with a 6-1 Tampa Bay lead.
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The Rays clawed back to even in the second inning, when James Loney began the action with a leadoff double.
Jose Molina, fresh off cutting down Wong’s steal attempt, singled with one out to put men at the corners. Jake Odorizzi erased the run he surrendered when he bunted in Loney, tying the game.
A ground out followed, but both clubs are back to even in the third.
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The surging Cardinal offense came out hot early Tuesday, beginning the attack with a leadoff homer by Matt Carpenter.
It was his fifth home run of the year and the second time he’s led off with a blast this season.
With the Cardinals up 1-0, Kolten Wong drew a walk, he was caught stealing for the the second time all year when he was cut down by Jose Molina, and Matt Holliday flew out to the warning track in right center field on the next pitch for two quick outs.
Matt Adams struck out on a high fastball to end the inning one hitter later, but the Cardinals lead 1-0.