Cardinals cruise by ‘Birds

The St. Louis Cardinals scored six runs over the first four innings on their way to a 7-3 victory over Memphis Saturday afternoon in front of 10,212 fans at AutoZone Park.

MEMPHIS, TN Rick Ankiel's two-run homer in the first inning sent the Cardinals on their way to victory. Skip Schumaker added a RBI-single in the second and Khalil Greene's two-run homer in the third gave St. Louis a 5-2 advantage. Schumaker, Chris Duncan and Colby Rasmus each had two hits to lead the Cards. Former Cardinals secret weapon and current third base coach Jose Oquendo drew a pinch hit walk in the top of the eighth inning.

Memphis tied the game in the bottom of the first when Tyler Greene and Joe Mather pulled off a double steal with Greene scoring on the play. Shane Robinson led the Redbirds with two hits and two runs scored. Redbirds manager Chris Maloney picked up a bat in the bottom of the ninth with two outs against Cardinals reliever Jason Motte and grounded out to second base to end the game.

Cardinals starter Joel Pineiro earned the win with seven innings of work. The right-hander allowed three runs, two earned, on three hits. Memphis starter Mitchell Boggs took the loss after giving up six runs on eight hits over 3.2 innings.

Memphis will open their 2009 Pacific Coast League schedule on Thursday hosting Oklahoma City in the first game of a four-game series. Game time is scheduled for 7:05 p.m.

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