September 3, 2008

Dunn walk-off double spoils Cards series in the desert

Arizona Diamondbacks' first baseman Adam Dunn's walk-off double wrecked a chance for the St. Louis Cardinals to take a series and somewhat salvage a disasterous road trip.

Actually, in the bottom of the ninth, it was Stephen Drew that put the D'backs in position of tie and win with a leadoff triple to right-center field. David Eckstein had a chance to foil his old team's chances, but with a pulled-in defense, ended up flying out to Ryan Ludwick in shallow right field.

Conor Jackson then singled home Drew to tie the game at 3-3. The game-winner was supplied by Adam Dunn, who ripped closer Chris Perez, down the right field line, a walk-off double that found Jackson hauling around the bases to score from first base.

The 4-3 comeback win for the Diamondbacks sent the Cardinals packing with a 1-5 road trip record. The Brewers had lost to the Mets, 9-2, so the Cards had a chance to gain ground in the NL Wild Card race. Not to be. Not today, anyway.

The day's loss negated an outstanding pitching performance by Cardinals' starter, Kyle Lohse, who pitched 6.0 innings of scoreless ball, allowing five hits, walking two, and striking out seven.

Troy Glaus homered in the third, a two-run shot that put the Cards on the board first. In the sixth, Lohse helped himself with a double down the right field line, scoring Lopez with the Cards' third run.

Kyle McClellan came on in relief in the seventh, the Diamondbacks getting to him, making up some of the defecit with a run, then scoring off a Ron Villone wild pitch to come within one at 3-2.

The best news for the Cards as far as the bullpen came when rookie Jason Motte made his major league debut with two Diamondbacks on base and two outs in the seventh. Motte struck out Mark Reynolds to get out of the jam.

Motte then went on to pitch the eighth, showing off a super-heater with good control, throwing in the high 90s.

Chris Perez, who hadn't thrown in about a week, had a rough go of it in the closer's role, when Drew hit his triple, then Dunn, a batter later, hit the walk-off winner, a double.

The Cardinals have tomorrow off, then start a home stand at Busch Stadium against the Florida Marlins on Friday night.
photo by SD Dirk