NEW YORK (AP) -- Adam Wainwright threw seven neat innings before leaving with a knee injury, and Jon Jay hit a two-run single that sent the St. Louis Cardinals to a 3-0 victory over the New York Mets on Tuesday night.
Left fielder Matt Holliday robbed Chris Young of a tying homer, one night after the Mets played some dazzling defense of their own to post a shutout in the series opener.
Wainwright (4-1) faced the minimum through four innings and outpitched Dillon Gee. It was the second consecutive scoreless start for Wainwright, who tossed a two-hit shutout last Thursday at Washington.
This time, the right-hander allowed four singles and walked none to extend his scoreless streak to 17 innings. He struck out three but was pulled after 79 pitches following an awkward tumble in the seventh.
Young fisted a short flare between the mound and first base. Wainwright went after it and lunged at the ball, but was unable to grab it and fell to the grass. Young was tagged out by first baseman Matt Adams, and Wainwright never threw another pitch.
He left the game with a hyperextended right knee.
Kevin Siegrist tossed a perfect eighth and Trevor Rosenthal completed the Cardinals' fourth shutout in 21 games this season. He worked around two walks in a hitless inning for his sixth save.
Holliday added an RBI single off Jose Valverde in the ninth for the Cardinals, who had lost four of six following a four-game winning streak. St. Louis starters entered with a 0.90 ERA in the previous eight games.
Even when Wainwright made a mistake, he got help. Holliday leaped at the fence to take a two-run homer away from Young in the fifth. Two batters later, Wainwright hung a curve but Travis d'Arnaud banged it right to shortstop for an inning-ending double play.
Curtis Granderson went 0 for 3 for the Mets before a sparse crowd announced at a season-low 20,220. The slumping newcomer is hitless in his last 22 at-bats during a 4-for-50 slide.
New York had won five of seven.
Rain fell in the first inning and Gee (1-1) matched zeros with Wainwright until the fourth.
Holliday drew a leadoff walk and the Cardinals loaded the bases on consecutive singles by Adams and Yadier Molina. Jay hit a sharp grounder through the box for a two-run single that ended New York's season-best scoreless streak at 20 innings.
Gee, who beat Arizona last Wednesday, had gone 10 innings without giving up a run.
The right-hander buckled down and prevented further damage - even after Jay prevented a double play with a hard slide at the plate that took out d'Arnaud. Mets manager Terry Collins came out for a chat with umpire John Kellogg, but the play looked clean.
Gee gave up six hits over six innings in the latest solid outing for Mets starters, who have a 1.98 ERA in the last eight games.
NOTES: Molina extended his hitting streak to 13 games. ... Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said LHP Tyler Lyons will get another start this weekend against Pittsburgh. Pitching in place of injured Joe Kelly, Lyons allowed two runs in six innings of a 2-0 loss to the Mets on Monday night after he was called up from Triple-A Memphis. "He impressed us," Matheny said. "He gave us a chance." ... Matheny said slumping CF Peter Bourjos will play against left-handers, and the Mets are scheduled to start LHP Jonathon Niese on Wednesday night. Matheny kept Jay in the lineup Tuesday, however, because he thinks the Cardinals need to "capitalize" on the good at-bats he's taking right now. ... Omar Quintanilla was at shortstop for the Mets instead of regular starter Ruben Tejada, who had a strong game Monday. Quintanilla entered 4 for 12 against Wainwright but went 0 for 2 with an error and a diving catch. ... Collins said OF Bobby Abreu is likely to get his first start for the Mets in the series finale Thursday against RHP Lance Lynn. ... David Wright's hitting streak ended at 12 games.
Tuesday, 22 April 2014 23:32 Published in Sports
WASHINGTON (AP) -- Albert Pujols reached 500 homers in a hurry.
The Los Angeles Angels' first baseman hit a pair of shots off Washington Nationals right-hander Taylor Jordan on Tuesday night - a three-run homer in the first inning and two-run drive in the fifth - to become the 26th player in major league history to reach the milestone.
Pujols is the first player to collect his 499th and 500th homers in the same game, according to STATS. About three months past his 34th birthday, he's also the third-youngest to get to 500; Alex Rodriguez and Jimmie Foxx were both 32.
Making a quick recent surge, Pujols has eight homers this season, all in the past 13 games.
The 500th went to left-center field at Nationals Park, on an 89 mph pitch with the count at 1-2. Pujols clapped his hands together a few strides before trotting home, then pointed both index fingers to the sky. As soon as he touched the plate, Pujols was greeted by his Angels teammates, who streamed over from the visiting dugout.
Fans gave the three-time NL MVP a partial standing ovation, and he acknowledged the spectators by tipping his red batting helmet as he approached the dugout. After heading down the steps, he came back out for a curtain call.
In other at-bats Tuesday, Pujols struck out swinging in the second inning and grounded to shortstop in the seventh.
After a couple of down-for-him years with the Angels following 11 transcendent seasons with the St. Louis Cardinals, a healthier Pujols appears ready to reclaim his spot among the game's elite hitters. He homered Friday and Saturday in games at the Detroit Tigers to lift his career total to 498, and now he's reached the round number of 500 - a total that remains hallowed despite losing its luster in recent years because so many players have surpassed it.
Of the 26 members of the 500-homer club, 11 have reached the mark in the last 15 years, according to STATS. Gary Sheffield was the most recent player to do it, hitting No. 500 on April 17, 2009.
"It's huge. That's a lot of balls over the fence. That's a lot of them. Albert's one of the great hitters of this generation," Nationals manager Matt Williams said before his team's series against the Angels. "The ability to not only hit home runs, but the ability to hit .330 and drive in 100-plus every single year - that's saying something. That's the ultimate guy you want on your team, because he provides it all."
The Cardinals selected Pujols in the 13th round of the 1999 draft, with the 402nd overall selection - a steal if ever there was one. Pujols stormed onto the scene as a 21-year-old rookie in 2001, hitting .329 with 37 homers and 130 RBIs.
He won a batting title in 2003, National League MVP awards in 2005, 2008 and 2009, and World Series titles with the Cardinals in 2006 and 2011. Pujols was the first player to hit 30 homers in each of his first 12 seasons and the second - after Al Simmons in 1924-34 - to reach 100 RBIs in each of his first 10.
A nine-time All-Star, Pujols hit 455 homers with the Cardinals.
So many power hitters of this era, have come under suspicion of using performance-enhancing drugs. Earlier this year, radio host and former Cardinals player Jack Clark apologized for and retracted comments he made in 2013 implying that Pujols used steroids. Pujols sued Clark for defamation in October.
After his decade-plus of excellence in St. Louis, Pujols signed a 10-year deal worth $240 million with the Angels following the 2011 season. Almost immediately, the 6-foot-3 slugger appeared to be slowing down. He hit .285 with 30 homers in 2012 - impressive numbers for most players, but career lows at that point for Pujols.
Things got even worse in 2013. Injuries limited Pujols to 99 games, and he was sidelined from July 26 on. He ended up hitting .258 with 17 homers and 64 RBIs.
As the temperatures rise, so too do the number projects on MoDOT's agenda. Today, MoDOT closed two westbound lanes and one eastbound lane on the Blanchette Bridge for maintenance on the span.
Those lanes will remain closed until about 3 o'clock this afternoon.
Meanwhile, MoDOT is warning drivers in the Valley Park area that they will be closing one of the two lanes on the Crescent Avenue bridge over Route 141 next week. Weather permitting, crews will be placing an epoxy overlay on the bridge.
They need three consecutive warm, dry days to complete the work. Depending on weather, the work could begin as early as Monday. Drivers should expect significant delays and should consider alternate routes.