Pirates 10, Cardinals 5

Preview | Box Score | Recap

ST. LOUIS (AP)—Don’t tell Pittsburgh manager Lloyd McClendon the Pirates have given up on the season.

Jose Hernandez, acquired from the Chicago Cubs in a trade on Tuesday that sent Kenny Lofton and Aramis Ramirez to Chicago, had three hits Friday as the Pirates beat the St. Louis Cardinals 10-5.

The Pirates are 3-0 since the deal, generally considered lopsided in favor of the Cubs. Pittsburgh also traded closer Mike Williams and left-handed reliever Scott Sauerbeck within the last week, getting only marginal prospects in return.

“We have the players we need,” McClendon said. “I take exception to those who say we don’t have what we need.”

Reggie Sanders and Brian Giles homered. The Pirates have won five of their last six and are an NL Central-best 22-14 since June 14.

Hernandez led off the eighth with a double off reliever Cal Eldred (3-4) as the Pirates scored six runs to break a 4-4 tie, thanks to a variety of physical and mental mistakes by the Cardinals.

Hernandez scored as Jeff Reboulet’s hit bounced off shortstop Edgar Renteria’s glove and became a double when both Renteria and second baseman Bo Hart chased the ball, but Eldred failed to cover second.

It got worse for St. Louis as Eldred fielded Craig Wilson’s smash up the middle and threw to second, but Renteria couldn’t come up with the low throw and both runners were safe. No error was charged.

Renteria then threw away a probable double-play ball by Jason Kendall, allowing both runners to score. After Abraham Nunez was hit by a pitch and Giles walked, Kendall scored on a double play. Sanders followed with a two-run homer off reliever Mike Crudale to make it 10-4.

“We just didn’t play well,” Cardinals manager Tony La Russa said. “We turned a good game into a not very close one.”

Brian Meadows (1-1) pitched three innings in relief of starter Kip Wells, surrendering only a two-out ninth-inning run on a single by Eduardo Perez.

J.D. Drew’s fifth-inning solo homer, his 11th, broke up what had been a scoreless duel between Wells and Cardinals rookie Dan Haren. The Pirates were hitless until Hernandez doubled with one out in the fifth.

Giles led off the sixth with a double and scored one out later on a triple by Sanders. Randall Simon’s single drove in Sanders, and Simon went to third on a single by Hernandez. Reboulet’s single off reliever Esteban Yan made it 3-1.

The Cardinals regained the lead 4-3 in the bottom of the sixth on a sacrifice fly by pinch-hitter Orlando Palmeiro, a wild pitch and Drew’s two-out single.

Giles’ one-out homer in the seventh made it 4-4.

Wells gave up four earned runs in six innings, striking out six and walking five. Haren gave up three runs in 5 1-3 innings, with six strikeouts and fourwalks.

Notes

Haren walked two in the first. In 20 previous minor and major league games this season, he hadn’t walked more than two in any game. … The Cardinals’ Albert Pujols played while appealing a two-game suspension for his role in a fight during a game against San Diego on July 13. He was 1-for-5. … With a second-inning strikeout, Hernandez has struck out 126 times in 100 games and is on a pace for 204 for the season, which would top the record of 189 set by Bobby Bonds in 1970. Hernandez seemed a sure bet to set the record last season while with Milwaukee before sitting out all but three of the final 11games.

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