Walton's Game Observations – Sunday – Cards 2-0

Jeff Suppan and Jim Edmonds led the Cardinals over the Milwaukee Brewers by a 2-0 mark Sunday afternoon.

The St. Louis Cardinals defeated the Milwaukee Brewers by a 2-0 score at Miller Park Sunday afternoon. The Cardinals' record is now 97-60 as they salvaged the final game of the three-game weekend series. In the process, they avoided their first four-game losing streak of the season. The Cards are 4-7 in their last eleven games and 11-12 for the month.

Jeff Suppan opposed Doug Davis, who turned 30 years old on Saturday. Despite what Tony La Russa says publicly, Suppan seems to have earned the #3 postseason rotation spot as he spun a six-hit shutout, earning his 16th win for the second consecutive year. Suppan fanned seven and walked none and didn't allow any runners past second base. His defense helped him out with three double plays. Jason Isringhausen pitched the ninth for his 37th save of the season. The shutout was the Cardinals' 14th of the season.

The offense continued to struggle, managing only five hits on the day. Jim Edmonds tripled and homered, scocing both runs. Hector Luna doubled and stole a base. Reggie Sanders singled and had a sacrifice fly. Albert Pujols continued his recent rough stretch, going 0-for-3 with a walk.

Weird Rolen stat
According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Scott Rolen is one of 11 active players who have appeared in at least 900 games in the field, all at one position. The others: Sean Casey, Luis Castillo, Cristian Guzman, Derek Jeter, Derrek Lee, Tino Martinez, John Olerud, J.T. Snow, Miguel Tejada and Frank Thomas. Florida's Mike Lowell was #12 before appearing at second base instead of his customary third base the other day.

Sunday's lineup
Eckstein, Edmonds, Pujols, Sanders, Taguchi (rf), Grudzielanek, Molina, Luna (3b) and Suppan. After getting another cortisone shot in his neck, Larry Walker did not play this weekend.

On to the game…

Brewers second – Approaching record
Geoff Jenkins singled with one out to become the first runner of the ballgame. One pitch later, a 6-4-3 ended the inning. It was double play #191 of the season, one short of the team record.

Cards third – A runner
Suppan became the first Cardinals runner, as he singled to left.

Cards fourth – The lead
Edmonds laced a leadoff triple, his first of the season, into the rightfield corner. Albert walked. Edmonds slid home to score on a sacrifice fly to center by Sanders. Pujols alertly took second on the throw home, but was stranded there. Cards 1-0.

Brewers fourth – Threat rebuffed
J.J. Hardy and Lyle Overbay each singled with one out. There was a big argument at first base led by Pujols, then La Russa, as a Molina snap throw beat Overbay diving back into the bag. However, Pujols may or may not have applied the tag on time. The double play record was tied as Carlos Lee ground into a nice 5-3 on a full count to end the inning.

Cards fifth – Live and die by the sword
Hector Luna stroked a double that bounced off the wall that juts out toward left. He stole third base. He does add a lot to the team. It was his tenth steal out of 11 attempts this season. The Brewers guessed right as the suicide squeeze failed miserably. Luna left third too soon. Suppan swung, trying to protect Luna and fanned. Luna was caught in a rundown.

Cards sixth – JimEd goes deep
With one out, Edmonds took one of his windmill swings. The upper cut shot landed in the right field seats. It was his second extra base hit in a row and 29th home run of the season. Cards 2-0.

Brewers sixth – Aggressive D
Damian Miller singled leading off. As Davis tried to sacrifice, Pujols charged in and nabbed Miller at second with a great throw.

Brewers seventh – Record set
Overbay led off with a single. After Lee fanned, Jenkins ground into twin killing #193 of the season for the Redbirds.

Cards eighth – Double ouch
Luna fouled a ball off his foot. Barry Weinberg came out to check on him. When fanning, he threw his bat away in frustration; drawing boos from the Brewers fans.

Brewers eighth – No DP
For the third inning in a row, the leadoff man singled. This time, it was Bill Hall. He was stranded.

Cards ninth – Last hit
Sanders singled with two out. Skip Schumaker pinch ran. Didn't matter.

Brewers ninth – Izzy time
Jason Isringhausen took over and retired his three hitters in order.

Upcoming action - projected (times CDT)
Monday: Off day
Tuesday vs. Astros: Jason Marquis vs. Roy Oswalt 8:10pm FSNM
Wednesday vs. Astros: Chris Carpenter vs. Brandon Backe 8:10pm FSNM
Thursday: Off day
Friday vs. Cincinnati: Mark Mulder vs. Randy Keisler 8:10pm FSNM
Saturday vs. Cincinnati: Matt Morris vs. Ramon Ortiz 3:15pm WB11
Sunday vs. Cincinnati: Jeff Suppan vs. Brandon Claussen 1:15pm WB11
Regular season ends.

Brian Walton can be reached via email at brwalton@earthlink.net.

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