St. Louis Cardinals' Adam Wainwright throws against the Seattle Mariners in the first inning in a baseball game Monday, June 14, 2010, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Bill Boyce) By Bill Boyce
St. Louis Cardinals' Matt Holliday (7) scores past the tag of Seattle Mariners' Rob Johnson on a fly ball by Ryan Ludwick in the third inning of a baseball game Monday, June 14, 2010, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Bill Boyce) By Bill Boyce
ST. LOUIS (AP) -- Albert Pujols took one off the noggin for his team on a perfect day at the plate and stand-in cleanup hitter Ryan Ludwick homered to help the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Seattle Mariners 9-3 on Monday night.
Pujols singled three times and walked twice as the Cardinals bounced back after totaling 19 runs during a 1-5 West Coast swing that dropped them out of the NL Central lead. Plus, he stayed in the game after a throw to the plate glanced off his helmet ear flap in the fifth.
Ludwick finished with four RBIs and Adam Wainwright (9-4) pitched into the eighth after a shaky start.
The Mariners have lost six of seven, fizzling after Ichiro Suzuki's 31st career leadoff homer.
(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)