Tue. Final: Cardinals 8, Brewers 1
By Todd Welter
Next game: Wednesday, May 27th vs. St. Louis
The Cardinals did not just vent their frustrations over not being able to beat the Brewers. They knocked the Crew around and Adam Wainwright made sure the Brewers sat there and took it.
St. Louis needed four home runs and Wainwright clamped down the Brewers' bats to snap a four-game losing streak to the Crew with an 8-1 rout at Miller Park.
Chris Duncan hit a two-run shot in the sixth, Nick Stavinoha belted his first career home run, and Colby Rasmus and Wainwright each bashed solo home runs. Add in Wainwright being in complete control on the mound and that is how the Cardinals won just their sixth game over the Brewers in the last 20 contests between the two teams which dates back to the 2008 season.
Wainwright (5-2) picked up his fifth win of the season as he allowed just one run on five hits over seven innings. He struck out a season-high nine batters, walked two and stranded seven baserunners. He retired 14 of the last 17 hitters he faced as he had the comfort of a big league most of the game.
"He's one of those guys you can't give too much of a lead because he is tough," Mike Cameron thought as he was one of the rare Brewers hitters to do much with a 2-for-4 night.
The Brewers could not get the same type of performance out of their starter. Jeff Suppan just did not have it and it showed by the amount of work he logged. The Brewers' starter only made it through three and two-thirds of an inning. Suppan (3-4) gave up five runs on seven hits and had just one strikeout and one walk as he was served with his fourth loss of the season.
"For the most part, I executed pitches but the results obviously weren't there," Suppan said.
Suppan got roughed up pretty good in the fourth inning when he surrendered a first pitch, lead-off homer to Rasmus. Suppan then got the next two outs but served up another first pitch home run ball to Wainwright. It was Wainwright's fourth career home run--and as fate would have it, his last home run came against the Brewers on Apr. 18th, 2008 off Carlos Villanueva.
"Not a good night for Soup tonight," Brewers manager Ken Macha said. "He's got the good command. What really highlighted the fact he didn't have it tonight, was the couple first pitch home runs."
Suppan then gave up a double to Joe Thurston who had himself a nice night as he went 2-for-3 with three runs. Skip Schumaker would drive in Thurston with a single and that would be all for Suppan.
Schumaker's bat did a whole lot of damage as he went 3-for-5 with a double, two singles, a RBI and a run.
The Brewers had a shot early to blow the game open with bases loaded in the third inning and no outs but came away with just one run to show for it as Wainwright retired the next three batters in order.
"We went from having a pretty good threat going and within two pitches, Wainwright pitched out of that jam," Macha said.
Making matters worse was the Brewers had to go through most of the game without their best bat as Ryan Braun had to leave the game in the fifth inning with a bruised right wrist. The bruise came when Braun was struck by a Wainwright pitch in the third inning. Braun will be re-evaluated by the team trainers in the morning to see if he can play the finale of this three-game set.
The Brewers also had to go without shortstop J.J. Hardy who missed his fourth straight game with back spasms. Hardy does plan on playing in the series finale tomorrow.
Craig Counsell was about the only other Brewers hitter who could do much of anything at the plate as he went 2-for-4 and scored the only Brewers run.
The Brewers (27-19) are back in a first-place tie in the National League Central with St. Louis (27-19) and a Wednesday matinee will settle who leaves Milwaukee with ownership of first place.