April 9, 2005 - The Springfield Cardinals endured their first shutout in franchise history on Saturday night, falling to the Arkansas Travelers by a final score of 2-0 at Ray Winder Field.
Angels pitching prospect Ervin Santana was tough on Cardinals hitters, throwing seven shutout innings, in earning the win. Santana (1-0) allowed just four base hits on the night, keeping the Cards out of the hit column until an infield single by Dan Moylan in the sixth.
Cardinals left hander Oscar Alvarez (0-1) was outstanding, matching Santana pitch for pitch. The Travelers finally got to Alvarez in the fifth with an unearned run. Mike Eylward led off the inning with a single, then later advanced to second on a passed ball by catcher Dan Moylan. After advancing on a ground ball, Eylward would score from third on a two-out hit off the bat of Reggie Willits, making it a 1-0 Arkansas advantage.
The Cardinals had their best shot at Santana in the seventh, as Travis Hanson led off the inning with a single. Papo Bolivar bounced into a 4-6-3 double play though, leaving the bases empty with two outs. Back-to-back singles from Bo Robinson and Andy Schutzenhofer put runners at first and second as the Cardinals tried to tie the game. Kevin Estrada grounded out to second though, ending the rally.
After the Travs got another unearned run in the eighth to take a 2-0 lead, the Cards battled again in the ninth. Reid Gorecki led off the inning with a walk, but Jonathan Rouwenhorst got Travis Hanson to ground into a double play. Papo Bolivar flew out to right fielder Tommy Murphy, giving Rouwenhorst his first save, while leaving the Cardinals with a three-game skid to open the year.
Alvarez worked a total of six innings on the night, allowing just the one unearned run on four hits. Santana worked seven scoreless frames, limiting the Cards' bats to four hits.
The Cards look to pick up their first win of the year on Sunday afternoon, sending Jordan Pals to the hill in his Springfield debut. Arkansas sends southpaw Daniel Davidson to the hill in his first Double-A appearance. Game time from Ray Winder Field in Little Rock will be at 2:00pm on Sunday afternoon.
The Cardinals return home for their regular season home opener on Tuesday, April 12th. Tickets are still available by calling (417) 863-2143, or by visiting www.springfieldcardinals.com. All Springfield Cardinals games are broadcast live on JOCK 98.7 FM as well as online at www.springfieldcardinals.com.