St. Louis starter Jason Marquis wasn’t pleased with his first start against his former team.
Now, he’ll get another chance to show Atlanta what it gave up as the Braves and Cardinals continue their three-game series at Busch Stadium in a matchup between division leaders.
Marquis allowed six earned runs and 10 hits in five innings of the Cardinals’ 9-7 loss to the Braves on Aug. 14 of last season in his first career start against Atlanta. He gave up a career-high four homers, but escaped without a decision.
The right-hander, who turns 27 later in the month, started his career with the Braves, going 13-15 with a 4.45 ERA in 96 appearances, including 40 starts, for Atlanta from 2000-2003.
“I wanted to come in here and have a good showing, and it went the other way,” Marquis said.
Marquis lost his third straight start on Monday, allowing a season high-tying six earned runs and nine hits in six innings of a 6-5 defeat to the Florida Marlins and failing to become the last Cardinals starter to reach double figures in wins.
“He got a couple of breaking balls not in perfect spots,” manager Tony La Russa said. “He just didn’t get away with anything but he made a lot of good pitches.”
Marquis will square off against Atlanta’s Tim Hudson, who allowed four earned runs and eight hits in 6 1-3 innings of Monday’s 4-1 loss to rookie sensation Zach Duke and the Pittsburgh Pirates. The 30-year-old right-hander fell to 1-1 with a 2.84 ERA in four starts since returning from a month on the disabled list.
“I didn’t have very good stuff,” said Hudson, who is one win shy of 100 for his career. “Early on, I was OK. But about the midpoint on, I was keeping the ball up and getting away with some pitches. It finally caught up to me.”
The Cardinals beat John Smoltz and the Braves 11-3 on Friday for their fifth win in seven games. Albert Pujols homered to become the first player in major league history to hit 30 in each of his first five seasons.
“He is a classic high-average hitter because he takes a relentless approach every at-bat,” manager Tony La Russa said of Pujols, who has a major league-leading 94 runs. “Every at-bat he’s the same way. He battles the great pitchers, he battles the real good ones, the good ones, the ones that are trying to make it.”
Marcus Giles doubled in a pair of runs for the Braves, who lost just their fourth in 13 games.