Carpenter Nails Down Complete Game Victory

Chris Carpenter (13-6) allowed just three hits in his third complete game of the year, leading the Cards past the Pirates, 3-1 Friday night.

The Cardinals and Pirates are meeting for the fifth time this season and second time at the new Busch Stadium. The Redbirds improve their record to 8-5 vs. the Pirates so far this season, including a three-game series sweep in their April 24-26 meeting at Busch Stadium. The Bucs returned the sweep to the Cards in the last meeting August 11-13, when the Pirates took three games at Pittsburgh for the first series sweep since June 28-30, 2004.

The Cardinals 6-4 over their last 10 games, have won three in a row and look to pay the Bucs back this weekend for that three game sweep in August.

Tonight's victory over the Pirates gives the Cards a 5 1/2 game lead over the second-place Reds 1/2 games -- six in the loss column -- in the National League Central. The Cincinnati Reds are playing a late game against the San Diego Padres in what is a key series for both franchises.

The Padres are the current leaders in the National League Wild Card race, a single 1 1/2 game ahead of the Reds, who now must focus on the Wild Card race, as the Redbirds continue to rack up the wins.

The Cardinals will play just six games against N.L. Central foes in their next 16 games, beginning tonight with three against the Pirates. St. Louis' record against the central is an even 32-32, but the club is just 14-21 on the road vs. their division rivals.

For the record, the Cards haven't had a sub-.500 record within their division since 1999 (27-34; .443).

Jeff will make his 10th start for the Cardinals and his 26th start overall Weaver has faced the Pirates once this season already with St. Louis at Pittsburgh on 8/12. Jeff got the loss in the 3-2 game, pitching 5.1 innings and allowing all three runs on 10 hits. He has a 4-1, 2.48 ERA career mark vs. the Pirates in six starts. Weaver's 2.48 ERA is his lowest among all teams he's faced.

The Cardinals added two players today to their roster in St. Louis, recalling RHP Brad Thompson and OF John Rodriguez.

Anthony Reyes has been named the team's starting pitcher for Sunday's game, but will not be added to the roster until prior to his 1:15 start.


Sat., Sept. 2 vs. PIRATES: Jeff Weaver (2-3, 5.92) vs. Shawn Chacon (1-2, 7.88) 6:15 p.m.

Sun., Sept. 3 vs. PIRATES: Anthony Reyes (4-6, 4.73) vs. Ian Snell (12-8, 4.70) 1:15 p.m.

Mon., Sept. 4 vs. NATIONALS: Jason Marquis (14-12, 5.86) vs. Tony Armas Jr (8-10, 5.28) 12:05 p.m.

Tue., Sept. 5 vs. NATIONALS: Jeff Suppan (10-7, 4.61) vs. Ramon Ortiz (9-12, 5.34) 6:05 p.m.

Wed., Sept. 6 vs. NATIONALS: Chris Carpenter (12-6, 2.96+) vs. Pedro Astacio (3-4, 6.12)12:05 p.m.


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