St. Louis bats struggle in Milwaukee, Cards lose 5-1 -

St. Louis bats struggle in Milwaukee, Cards lose 5-1

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By John Bailey By John Bailey

(BaseballStL) —  It was three innings before the first run was scored, but the fifth inning was where the fireworks happened. 

The Brewers struck first, finally getting to Cardinal starter Joe Kelly with one out in the third inning. 

After Logan Schafer reached on an error by Matt Adams, Peralta bunted him over. Two pitches later, he was coming around to score as Carlos Gomez blasted a double into the right center gap to score the game’s first run. 

Despite the RBI double, Kelly’s performance was strong. He allowed only three hits while striking out two on 45 pitches. He had 10 first pitch strikes, got eight ground outs and was ahead 0-2 or 1-2 four times. 

In the top of the fifth, Kelly tried to bunt his way on with two outs and nobody aboard. As he crossed the bag, he appeared to land short, catching the front of the base with his toe. As he continued into the outfield, he grabbed his hamstring in obvious discomfort. 

After exiting the field slowly, he was helped down the stairs in the dugout and exited the game. 

Seth Maness came in to handle pitching duties and ended up surrendering three runs; though not before an error (though it was mistakenly ruled a hit), a walk and an infield single extended the inning after two outs. 

Allen Craig  showed life in the sixth inning with a solo shot, pulling St. Louis within three. Matt Holliday followed with a single and the Cardinals appeared to be threatening. After Adams popped out, Yadier Molina singled, setting the stage for Peralta to tie the game with one swing. He would fly out to left, ending the threat.

The Cardinals threatened again in the seventh, putting two singles together before a double play ended the inning. 

The eighth saw another run from the Brewers. In his second inning of work, Keith Butler loaded the bases on a single, an HBP and a walk. He was promptly replaced by Pat Neshek, who walked Lyle Overbay on five pitches and gave Milwaukee a 5-1 lead. He would strike out Gomez with the bases loaded to escape with just one run. 

The Cardinals made one final push in the ninth, getting two aboard at second and third, but Matt Carpenter was unable to drive them in, striking out to end the game. 

Despite having nine hits, St. Louis hitters didn't have an extra base hit outside of Craig's homer. They struck out five times and left 14 runners on base. 

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