The St. Louis Cardinals looked to kick off the second half of the season with a bang.
Their first opponent: the Miami Marlins, entering the evening six games above .500.
Also, it was a happy birthday for legendary Cardinals broadcaster (and former player) Mike Shannon, who turned 77 on Friday.
For a while, it seemed as if the St. Louis Cardinals were off to a hot start, a new beginning. They held a 4-1 lead at one point much to the delight of the Busch Stadium crowd. However, the issues the plagued them throughout most of the first half began to show their faces again, and it all fell apart.
St. Louis blew leads of both 4-1 and 6-5 to fall to 19-27 at home on the season. Last year, they were 55-26 at home.
Matt Holliday made one of the many critical errors, when he misplayed a ball at first base that would have capped off a double play. The error led to a run. Later in the game, reliever Kevin Siegrist made a poor pickoff attempt on 42-year old Ichiro Suzuki (who notched his 2,991st career hit). The eventual winning run reached base in the ninth after Randal Grichuk misplayed a fly-out in center-field.
Offensively, however, it was another big day for one of the league’s best hitting teams. Tommy Pham hit two home runs, his first career multi-home run game, and Grichuk added another solo home run. Even though the team was outhit by the Marlin 13-10, they had plenty of opportunities to regain the lead.
Tomorrow’s starters will be Tom Koehler and Adam Wainwright. Koehler is 1-2 with a 7.56 ERA in three career starts against the Cardinals, and the Cardinals ace Wainwright (8-5, 4.49) is 50-28 with a 3.05 ERA for his career after the All-Star break. He is 2-0 his last two outings, while allowing one run in 14 innings.