No Bull! The Pen Blows Another One

Back-to-back bases loaded walks with the bases loaded helped St.Louis to a 6-5 win over the Phillies in the home opener for the Cardinals. For the third straight game, it was the bullpen that threw gasoline on the fire, helping to sink the Phillies.

Aaron Fultz issued back-to-back walks to Larry Walker and Albert Pujols with the bases loaded as the Cardinals scored three times in the eighth inning to take a 6-5 decision over the Phillies. Fultz followed Ryan Madson (0-1), who walked David Eckstein to load the bases.

The Cardinals mounted a comeback in the seventh inning against Terry Adams. With runners on first and third with nobody out, Madson relieved Adams and got Pujols to ground into a double-play, but a run scored on the play. Madson then retired Scott Rolen to get out of the inning.

Pat Burrell hit a sacrifice fly in the first inning to give the Phillies a 1-0 lead and David Bell singled to score Placido Polanco as the Phillies took an early 2-0 lead off Cardinals' starter Mark Mulder. Mulder's St.Louis debut wasn't pretty, giving up five runs - four earned - in six innings on nine hits and three walks.

Starter Cory Lidle gave up a run in the bottom of the first, but pitched well in his first start of the season. Lidle pitched 5 1/3 innings, giving up two runs - one earned - on five hits and three walks.

The Phillies put two more on the board on RBI singles by Bell and Jason Michaels in the third as they took a 4-1 edge. Another RBI single from Michaels in the fifth gave the Phillies a 5-1 advantage. Michaels made his first start of the season and went 3-for-4 with two RBI for the Phillies.

Al Reyes (1-0) pitched two scoreless innings and recorded the win. Jason Isringhausen pitched the ninth to record his second save of the year.


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