St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Jake Westbrook throws against the Cincinnati Reds in the first inning of a baseball game, Friday, July 15, 2011 in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Al Behrman) By Al Behrman
CINCINNATI (AP) -- Brandon Phillips hit a two-out, two-run homer in the ninth inning off Fernando Salas on Friday night, rallying the Cincinnati Reds to a 6-5 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals in another wild finish to the NL Central's nastiest rivalry.
Phillips connected on the second pitch from Salas (5-3) for his second career game-ending homer, stopping to wave his arms in joy before reaching first base. Phillips injected much of the ill-will in the rivalry last season, when he called the Cardinals whiners and sparked a brawl.
St. Louis went up 5-4 in the eighth on Albert Pujols' two-run homer off hard-throwing Aroldis Chapman. The Cardinals' dependable closer couldn't hold on, blowing a save for the third time in 19 chances.