Giants 7, Cardinals 2
ST. LOUIS (AP)—Dustin Hermanson made an impressive return to St. Louis.
Hermanson, released by the Cardinals last June, took a no-hitter into the seventh inning and Barry Bonds hit a three-run homer one day before his 40th birthday, helping the San Francisco Giants end St. Louis’ five-game winning streak with a 7-2 victory Friday night.
Hermanson (4-3) allowed only a fourth-inning walk to Albert Pujols before Pujols’ 28th homer ended his no-hit bid with one out in the seventh. Bonds never moved in left field as the ball sailed far above him—a drive estimated at 434 feet.
“If you guys go back and look at it, it was shoulder high,” Hermanson said. “I’ve got to tip my cap to him. If he’s not the best hitter in the game, he’s one of the two or three.”
Hermanson gave up two runs on three hits in 6 2-3 innings. He struck out five and walked one for his first victory since June 27, then had nothing but good things to say about the Cardinals.
“I have no regrets about what I did over here,” Hermanson said. “I wasn’t trying to get back at these guys. I have all the respect in the world for Tony La Russa.”
The Giants, facing the Cardinals for the first time this year, are 6-1 against St. Louis the last two seasons. The Cardinals lost for only the second time in 14 home games, and have won 15 of 18 overall.
“We’re human, everybody here,” Pujols said. “Hopefully we bounce back tomorrow. You never look at how you start a series, you look at how you finish.”
Bonds’ 25th homer of the season, and 683rd of his career, gave the Giants a 6-0 lead in the seventh. He had been 0-for-8 against Jeff Suppan (9-6) before launching a 3-1 fastball over the right-field wall for his first homer in five days.
“We needed to pitch to Bonds carefully, and me trying to be too careful I ended up making a mistake,” Suppan said. “I was in a situation where you can’t make a mistake.
“I put the team in a situation where we were going to lose.”
La Russa blamed himself for not calling for an intentional walk after Suppan fell behind.
“That situation, as soon as the count got away from us that’s my mistake,” La Russa said. “That’s where he should have been walked.
“That’s my call and I messed that one up.”
Bonds wasn’t surprised that the Cardinals switched to a left-handed reliever for his at-bat.
“It don’t matter, I’ve hit 300-plus off left-handers,” Bonds said. “I don’t care who you bring in. Throw it over the plate.”
Ray Durham also homered for the Giants, who ended the Cardinals’ 27-inning shutout streak with two runs in the fourth. The Cardinals shut out the Brewers the previous two games.
Suppan failed for now in a bid to make the Cardinals the only team in the majors with four 10-game winners—they’re already the only team with three. In seven innings, he gave up six runs on nine hits to end a four-game winning streak built over seven starts.
The loss was Suppan’s first since June 6 against the Astros.
Durham hit his ninth homer to lead off the fifth, and Michael Tucker and Snow singled in front of Bonds’ homer in the seventh.
All but five of Bonds’ homers have come against right-handers. … Suppan was hitless in two at-bats and is 0-for-37 at the plate in a slump that dates to his last hit July 28, 2003, off the Giants’ Brett Tomko, then with St. Louis, at Busch Stadium. Last year, he batted .293 with two RBIs, and he’s 0-for-32 this year. … The Giants are 19-13 on the road since May 18. … The Cardinals haven’t posted three straight shutouts since Sept. 6-8, 1988. … Before this start, Suppan had allowed three or fewer runs in 11 of his last 12 starts. … Hermanson is 4-0 with a 2.27 ERA against the Cardinals. … Durham had been 5-for-44 against Suppan before his homer.