ST. LOUIS -- The man St. Louis Cardinals fans love to hate gave them more reason to dislike him Monday.
Cincinnati second baseman Brandon Phillips snapped a 4-4 tie in the top of the ninth inning with a double that landed on the right field line, and the Reds spoiled the Cardinals' home opener with a nine-run outburst in a 13-4 victory.
Sam LeCure (1-0) worked a perfect eighth inning for Cincinnati, while Mitchell Boggs (0-1) absorbed the loss. Boggs issued four walks in the ninth, including one to Todd Frazier with the bases loaded that made it 6-4. Boggs, the fill-in closer with Jason Motte on the disabled list, was charged with seven runs (six earned) while getting only one out.
Pinch hitter Jack Hannahan, Cesar Izturis and Joey Votto tacked on RBI singles, while Cincinnati center fielder Shin-Soo Choo made up for two costly errors by rapping a three-run double down the left field line as the largest regular-season crowd in Busch Stadium III history (47,345) raced for the exits.
Phillips, who's been booed loudly since being one of the central figures in a bench-clearing brawl between the teams in August 2011, also homered as part of the Reds' 14-hit attack. Jay Bruce added four singles and an RBI.
St. Louis led most of the day, thanks to a couple of shocking misplays by Choo on deep drives off Yadier Molina's bat.
In the bottom of the first inning, Choo juggled Molina's fly ball at the warning track and then dropped it, enabling Jon Jay and Matt Holliday to score for a 2-0 St. Louis lead.
In the sixth, Choo got to Molina's liner near the track and dropped it again as Holliday hustled home from first to push the Cardinals' lead to 4-2. Choo committed just two errors last year in 154 games for Cleveland.
However, the Reds rallied against Jaime Garcia, who tied a career high with 10 strikeouts over 6 2/3 innings, and the St. Louis bullpen. Chris Heisey's second double scored Ryan Hanigan in the seventh to make it 4-3, sending Garcia to the showers.
Pinch hitter Xavier Paul evened the score at 4 in the eighth, grounding an RBI single to right off setup man Trevor Rosenthal.
Cincinnati starter Mat Latos, who entered the game with a 9.00 ERA in seven career starts against St. Louis, allowed four hits and four runs (one earned) over six innings.
NOTES: St. Louis activated third baseman David Freese from the 15-day disabled list and sent utility infielder Ryan Jackson down to Triple-A Memphis of the Pacific Coast League. Freese, who was out since March 23 with a lower back strain, went 4-for-12 over the weekend in three games with Memphis. He started for St. Louis on Monday and went 0-for-3. ... This was the first of six games the teams will play in St. Louis in the season's first 31 days ... Cincinnati won just three of its previous 27 series in St. Louis.