Holliday's two homers push Cards over Rockies

Matt Holliday led the St. Louis Cardinals to another Colorado win on two home runs Wednesday night.



Left fielder Matt Holliday had an intermediate stay in Oakland after some big years in Colorado, but the Cardinals' slugger seems as if he wants to remind Coors Field fans of what got away.


After homering once Tuesday, Holliday slammed two home runs, one 452 feet, and drove in five runs Wednesday as the Cardinals rocked Colorado, 9-6. Holliday has knocked in nine runs in the two games to move into a tie with Cardinals right fielder Carlos Beltran for the National League RBI lead at 75.


Moreover, Holliday is hitting .388 with eight homers against the Rockies since he left them after the 2008 season.


"It's not like it's surprising," manager Mike Matheny said of Holliday, who has hit .360 for the last three months after a rough start.


Sinkerballing right-hander Jake Westbrook did fine for five innings, holding the Rockies to one run although he walked four. But the ball got up in the sixth and so did the Rockies, who rained four doubles and a triple, good for four runs.


But center fielder Eric Young thought one of the doubles was going to be a triple as he eased into third base, having knocked in a run. Cardinals third baseman David Freese played possum, taking a relay throw from second baseman Tyler Greene and slapping a tag on Young, standing up, for the final out.


The Cardinals went ahead on Holliday's three-run homer in the next inning.


"You try to play it out," said Freese. "It all starts with the relay. You hope he isn't going to slide."


And the Cardinals can't afford to slide, either, as they chase a potential wild-card berth, if they can't run down Cincinnati for the Central Division title.


"We're not looking at a ton of time," said Holliday. "We've got two months left. We've got to win some games."



RHP Edward Mujica, acquired from Miami the day before, worked a perfect seventh inning before rain delayed the game for 1 hour, 26 minutes. "We're lucky it worked out that we could put him in that (seventh-inning) position right away," said manager Mike Matheny. Mujica, who didn't think he'd be traded, had to explain it to his wife, who just gave birth to a daughter three weeks ago. "That's part of the business. I take it like that. But my wife—I don't think she took it like that," Mujica said. Mujica, who had 29 "holds" the last two seasons, got another one on Wednesday.

SS Rafael Furcal, who is working out although he has had lower back discomfort, will meet with doctors when he returns to St. Louis. He is likely to miss his fifth straight start on Thursday.

3B David Freese extended his hitting streak to 12 games (21 for 42). He also is playing the best defense of his career.

LF Matt Holliday, who had 22 homers last season, is at 21 after a two-homer display on Wednesday. Besides setting the tone on the field, Holliday has a good clubhouse presence, manager Mike Matheny said. "He's been real vocal lately about urgency," said Matheny. The manager said he deemed it a good sign when "you have somebody leading and his actions back up his words."

RHP Mitchell Boggs worked his 21st straight scoreless outing, covering 18 2/3 innings as the second of three relievers who preserved RHP Jake Westbrook's 10th win.

RHP Trevor Rosenthal, called up from Class AA, where he was starting, to become a bullpen member for three weeks, was sent back—but to Class AAA Memphis this time. He will be a starter and will pitch Friday for the Redbirds. "He could still come back and help us as a reliever and he'll do fine," manager Mike Matheny said. "But he's a starter. The mix of pitches, the body type, how he carries his velocity late in the game—all of those things point to the need to continue to groom him as a starter."

RHP Eduardo Sanchez, a member of the Cardinals' bullpen each of the last two seasons, went on the Class AAA Memphis disabled list with elbow soreness.

By the Numbers:

21-11 - Cardinals' record in games started by opposing left-handers. They are 35-37 in games started by right-handers.

Quote to Note:

"It looks like he used to play here or something."

- 3B David Freese after LF Matt Holliday, a former Rockies star, hit three homers and knocked in nine runs in the first two games of a series in Denver.


SS Rafael Furcal (back discomfort) sat out a fourth straight start Aug. 1. He is not likely to play Aug. 2 and will be examined when the team returns to St. Louis.

LHP Jaime Garcia (left shoulder strain) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to June 6, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on July 16. After further examination, it was determined that he has tearing in his rotator cuff. He threw 40 pitches from 60 feet on flat ground for the first time in a month July 4. He threw live batting practice July 25. He began a rehab assignment and was slated to make three or four starts before a potential return to the Cardinals in mid-August.

RHP Kyle McClellan (torn labrum in right shoulder) went on the 15-day disabled list May 18 due to a strained right elbow, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on June 30. He threw on flat ground for the first time July 3, but he subsequently felt shoulder pain. He had season-ending shoulder surgery July 10.

RHP Chris Carpenter (weak right shoulder) went on the 15-day disabled list retroactive to March 26, and he was transferred to the 60-day DL on June 10. He threw for the first time since March on June 13 and then threw another 40 pitches on June 15. He threw to hitters for the first time June 22 but then had a setback June 25 when he felt renewed weakness in the shoulder. He said it felt better the next day, and he had an extensive throwing session off flat ground June 27. On June 28, he was told he has thoracic outlet syndrome, which can cause, among its effects, weakness in one's shoulder. A July 2 bullpen session was canceled. He underwent season-ending surgery July 19 to relieve thoracic outlet syndrome.

Link to boxscore: St. Louis 9 at Colorado 6

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