St. Louis will play the Chicago Cubs at 2 PM Eastern on WGN and FSN Midwest. I get WGN so I will be live-blogging the game. The temperature at Wrigley is 45 degrees.
Starting Lineups (not online yet):
David Eckstein SS
Juan Encarnacion RF
Albert Pujols 1B
Jim Edmonds CF
Scott Rolen 3B
So Taguchi LF
Gary Bennett C
Aaron Miles 2B
Jeff Suppan P
Juan Pierre CF
Neifi Perez 2B
Derrek Lee 1B
Aramiz Ramirez 3B
Jacque Jones RF
Michael Barrett C
Matt Murton LF
Ronny Cedeno SS
Greg Maddux P
First inning: Warmup pitches are just about over. It's time to dominate against the Cubs as the Cards make their way back to the playoffs this season. Eckstein at the plate. 0-1. Flies out to right field. Juan Encarnacion is up with none on. 1-0. Grounds out to short. Two outs. That brings up Albert Pujols the Great. 2-1. Flies out to center.
Pierre. 1-2. Popped up to Scott Rolen at third base. One out. Perez. 2-2. Grounded to Aaron Miles for the second out. Lee. 0-1. That's a deep fly ball and sadly, a home run. Two outs and the Cubs lead 1-0. Ramirez grounds out to Rolen to end the inning.
Second Inning: Edmonds at the plate. 3-2. Grounds to Maddux for the first out. Rolen due up. 1-0. Fairball to left field for a double. Rolen "might be the great third baseman ever." So Taguchi. 0-1. Grounds to second and advances Rolen to third. Gary Bennett gets his first start. 3-2. Strikeout. That ends the inning with Rolen left on base.
Jones. 1-0. Flies out to Miles. Barrett. 2-1. Grounds out to 3B. Murton. 3-2. Walk. Cedeno. That's deep to right field. Cedeno triples thus driving in Matt Murton. Two outs. Maddux. 1-2. Strikeout. Cardinals give up another run and the Cubs lead 2-0.
Third inning: Miles due up. 0-2. Pop up to short. Suppan. Grounds to short. Eckstein back up. 1-2. Grounds to second. That was a quick inning.
Pierre leads off the third inning for the Cubs. 1-0. Grounds to Rolen. Perez. 1-1. That was a blooper to center. Lee. 3-1. Walk. Ramirez. 0-1. Eckstein stops it but throws the ball over second and Perez advances to score. Runners in scoring position and the Cubs now lead 3-0. Get someone warming up in the pen NOW. Jones is being intentionally walked with one out. Barrett. 1-2. Blooper to center and the Cubs get another run. Play some good defense and start stopping those runs. Dave Duncan makes a trip to the mound. Bases loaded with one out. Murton. 2-0. Eck to second to first for the double play to finally end the inning.
Fourth inning: Juan leads off for the Cardinals with the heart of the lineup due up. 0-1. Encarnacion is safe on an infield hit that should have been an error. The Mighty Pujols at the bat. 2-2 (That foul ball should have been fair). Flies out to left field. Edmonds. 2-0. Flies out to Murton and and Juan doesn't beat the throw to end the inning. I'd say had it not been for the wind, that hit would have been a two-run home run.
Cedeno leads off for the hated rivals. Juan missed the ball in the sky and Cedeno gets a double despite a bad throw by Juan. Maddux grounds out to Pujols. Murton advances to third. One out. Pierre. 2-1. Blooper to right scores Murton for a Cubs 5-0 lead. Still one out. Perez. A fly ball to left center and Taguchi is not there in time and the throw was a bit late. Lee. 2-2. Rolen to Miles to Pujols for a double play.
Fifth inning: Rolen to lead off the fifth inning. 3-1. Walk. Taguchi. Grounds out into a 4-6-3 double play. Bennett. 1-1. Grounds out to short.
Ramirez. 0-1. Blooper to left field. Please take out Suppan. Jones. 0-2. Atta boy! Strikeout. Barrett. 3-2. Miles to Eck to Pujols for the double play. Through the end of five, the game has gone on for just about 1 hour, twenty minutes.
Sixth Inning: Miles leads off. 2-2. Grounds out to short. Good news, J-Rod is on deck and Braden Looper is warming up. J-Rod. 2-0. There's a deep fly ball and the wind keeps it in play for the second out. The wind is going at 25 MPH from the northeast. Eck at the plate with two outs. 2-2. Blooper to center and Juan is up--please hit productively! 2-2. Eckstein steals second and we have a runner in scoring position. Again, Juan gets the last out of an inning. Pujols to lead off the seventh inning.
Braden Looper finally sees some activity this season. After signing a three year deal for $13.5 million, it's about time! Welcoem back, Braden! Murton. 2-1. Grounds out to David "Just Enough" Eckstein. Cedeno. 1-0. Grounds out to Scott Rolen. Maddux. 1-2. There's a grounder to second and the inning is over. What a welcome back to the Cardinals for Braden Looper!
Seventh Inning: Pujols at the plate. 1-2. Popped up to second. Edmonds due up. 1-0. There's a deep fly ball and that ball is out of here! Home run for Jimmy Edmonds! The Cards are finally on the board with a run. Let's get a rally started. Rolen. 3-2. Walk. Taguchi due up. Maddux exits and Bob Howry comes in from the bullpen. 2-0. Popped out to second. Bennett. 1-2. There's a fly ball and Jacque Jones will be on Baseball Tonight this evening. It's stretch time!
Pierre. 0-1. Grounds to second. Perez. 1-1. Insight flips on the bad weather screen. That ball got away from Pujols and Perez gets a double. Lee. 0-1. Grounder to Rolen. Ramirez. 1-2. Taguchi makes the catch for the last out as Adam Wainwright warming up in the pen. Bad weather in Cincy means I am switching channels in between innings.
Eighth Inning: Miles. 1-2. Strikeout. Scott Spiezio pinch-hits for Looper. 1-2. Strikeout. Eckstein. 0-2. Strikeout. This game has now gone on for 2 hours, 1 minute.
Wainwright is now in and replaces Looper. Jones. 1-1. Fly ball to right field and Juan drops the ball while jumping and Juan throws to second and Jones is thrown out. There is an error on the play. Barrett. 1-0. Grounder to short. Two outs for Matt Murton. 2-1. There's a grounder to Eck and the inning is over.
Ninth inning: Ryan Dempter comes in and hope is fading for Cardinal fans but I still have faith and believe. Angel Pagan moves to left field. Encarnacion leads off. 0-1. Grounder to short. Pujols. 2-2. He grounds out to Aramis Ramirez to get the second out of the inning. Edmonds is likely to be the last Cardinal to bat until tomorrow...unfortunately. 1-2. Jimmy goes down swinging in front of 40,369.
W - Greg Maddux
L - Jason Suppan
The Cardinals move to 3-1 overall.
Approximated Official time: 2 hours, 12 minutes