After the first-place St. Louis Cardinals finished their road trip by sweeping the Miami Marlins, they headed back to Busch Stadium to start a three game series against the Chicago Cubs. It is the first series of a nine-game homestand for St. Louis.
And in a pitcher’s duel featuring plenty of dramatic moments on the mound and at the plate, it was the Cardinals who emerged victorious in a 3-2 victory in 10 innings.
The pitcher’s on the mound for the game were John Lackey (6-4, 3.41) for the Cardinals, and Jake Arrieta (7-5, 3.07).
Lackey started the game off by shutting the Cubs down in order. As for Arrieta, Kolten Wong led off with a double in the bottom of the first, but was eventually thrown out at home plate. The Cubs were held scoreless during the top of the second, but in the bottom of the second, St. Louis took an early 1-0 lead.
Following a one out walk by Yadier Molina, Randal Grichuk stepped up to the plate and hit a triple deep to center field, scoring Molina to make it 1-0 Cardinals.
While in the third inning, Lackey and Arrieta held their respective opponents scoreless, it was in the top of the fourth inning where Chicago was able to tie the game. Miguel Montero led off the inning with a walk issued by Lackey. Chris Coghlan then popped out to third baseman Matt Carpenter. Starlin Castro singled to center field, advancing Montero to third base. A single by Mike Baxter then scored Montero to tie the game at 1-1.
Both Lackey and Arietta went back and forth pitching scoreless innings until the top of the seventh inning, which turned out to be Lackey’s last inning of the game. Dexter Fowler led off the inning with a double to deep center field. He advanced to third after a groundout by Anthony Rizzo. Kris Bryant then hit a sacrifice fly, as Fowler scored to give the Cubs a 2-1 lead.
Kevin Siegrist entered the game in relief of Lackey to pitch the top of the eighth inning. The final line for Lackey: 7.0 IP, 8 H, 2 R, 2 ER, 3 BB, 5 K. Siegrist pitched a scoreless eighth inning despite allowing two runners on.
In the bottom of the eighth inning, with Pedro Strop on the mound for Chicago, Greg Garcia entered the game as a pinch-hitter for Siegrist.
And Garcia launched his first career Major League Baseball home run to tie the game at 2-2. It was his first home run since early August of 2014.
Cardinals closer Trevor Rosenthal entered to relieve Siegrist in the top of the ninth, and pitched a 1-2-3 inning, and with Hector Rondon on the mound for Chicago, the game headed to the 10th inning.
Randy Choate and Seth Maness kept the game tied at 2-2 to start off the top of the 10th inning, as the game headed to the bottom of the 10th. In the bottom of the inning, Justin Grimm pitched in relief of Rondon, and Peter Bourjos started off with a double. Wong reached on an infield single, and Carpenter was intentionally walked to bring up Jhonny Peralta.
Peralta then hit into a fielder’s choice, during which a throwing error to home plate ensured Bourjos scored as the Cardinals emerged victorious 3-2. Maness won his second game of the year, as Grimm lost his second. The Cardinals improve to 49-24, and the Cubs drop to 39-33.
Tomorrow night, Michael Wacha will get the nod on the mound.
(Chris Lee/St. Louis Post-Dispatch via AP)