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Holliday's slam caps Cardinals' 10-inning win

The SportsXchange

CINCINNATI -- This year's St. Louis Cardinals aren't accustomed to playing from behind. On Sunday night, they added resiliency to their resume.

Matt Holliday's fifth career grand slam highlighted a seven-run 10th inning that lifted the Cardinals to an 11-4 victory over the Cincinnati Reds in the finale of a three-game series Sunday night at Great American Ball Park.

"We just kept grinding out at-bats," Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. "We haven't been in that situation much, but we've shown that kind of fight and tenacity. The guys all did their part. It was a joy to watch."

Carlos Beltran hit his 14th home run in the fourth inning for St. Louis, which increased its lead in the NL Central to four games over the Reds and Pittsburgh Pirates.

St. Louis (41-22) won two of three in the series, its fifth consecutive series victory over Cincinnati (37-26) dating to last season.

Daniel Descalso's RBI double drove home the go-ahead run in the decisive 10th inning, and Matt Carpenter added a two-run single off J.J. Hoover (0-5). Carpenter extended his hitting streak to 18 games earlier in the game.

Descalso started Sunday's game partly because of his past success against Reds starter Bronson Arroyo, who was long gone when the Cardinals infielder drove home the game-winner.

"It was nice to get the series win tonight," Descalso said. "Behind by two runs, we just need to get a guy on. .. With our lineup, it's never out of reach. The Reds always play us tough. It's going to be a battle every time we play them."

Right-hander Curtis Partch had a rough start to his major league career. He entered to face Holliday with the bases loaded, and he gave up the grand slam on a 2-2 pitch.

David Freese extended his hitting streak to 19 games with a single earlier in the 10th.

Arroyo allowed two runs on six hits in six innings. He walked one and struck out four before leaving when his right leg stiffened up after being struck by Descalso's hard grounder in the fourth.

"These guys are never out of a ballgame," Arroyo said of the Cardinals. "Against some teams, when you lead 4-2 in the late innings, you feel like the game's over. This team fights you, the whole lineup. Every guy in the lineup has a hitting streak. It's not easy to navigate nine innings."

Cardinals right-hander Lance Lynn did not have a 1-2-3 inning until the sixth. He allowed four runs on five hits, walked three and fanned six over six innings.

"It's one of those games where I never really got into a rhythm," Lynn said.

Cincinnati led 4-2 in the seventh before the Cardinals rallied against the Reds' bullpen.

Three straight hits against right-hander Sam LeCure, including Carpenter's RBI single, cut the Cardinals' deficit to one run.

Beltran's sacrifice fly off Alfredo Simon brought home the tying run.

Cardinals right-hander Trevor Rosenthal (1-0) pitched perfect eighth and ninth innings with four strikeouts to earn the victory. Kevin Siegrist threw a 1-2-3 10th to close out the win.

Cincinnati's Shin-Soo Choo led off the first inning with a double, advanced to third on Derrick Robinson's sacrifice bunt and scored on Brandon Phillips' single to right. Jay Bruce's sacrifice fly made the score 2-0.

Arroyo retired the first seven batters he faced, three via strikeout. However, the Cardinals got better swings against the Reds right-hander their second time through the order.

In the fourth, Beltran extended his hitting streak to 10 games with a 409-foot homer to center, making the score 2-1. Holliday followed with a double and raced home on Yadier Molina's double to tie the score 2-2.

With runners on first and third in the fifth, Bruce worked the count to 3-2. On the ninth pitch from Lynn, he ripped a double to right, driving in two runs to put Cincinnati up by two runs.

"It's hard not to be disappointed," Reds manager Dusty Baker said. "You have a game that you lead in the late innings, you've got to find a way to hold that."

NOTES: Cincinnati scored twice against Lynn in the first inning, matching the number of runs Lynn had allowed over 13 innings in two prior starts against the Reds this season. .. Arroyo moved into eighth place on the Reds' all-time strikeouts list. .. Cardinals RHP Jake Westbrook allowed one earned run over seven innings in a rehab start Sunday for Class A Peoria. He gave up four hits with no walks and five strikeouts over 76 pitches. Westbrook, who's been on the disabled list since May 9 due to right elbow inflammation, could rejoin the Cardinals this week in New York. .. Robinson started in left field and batted second for the second straight game after doubling twice in his debut in the No. 2 spot on Saturday. He went 0-for-3 with a sacrifice Sunday.
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