Kyle McClellan was eyeing his seventh win of the season Monday afternoon at Busch Stadium against the defending World Champion San Francisco Giants, until the injury depleted visitors found their offensive groove.
After serving up a fourth inning grand slam to leadoff man Andres Torres, McClellan (6-2) and the Cardinals were left in the dust, thanks to a strong outing from lefty Madison Bumgarner (2-6), who notched just his second victory of the season.
As I mentioned earlier, McClellan has seen better days. Monday’s outing marked the shortest start of the season for the Cardinal right-hander, as he lasted just four innings and surrendered seven runs off seven hits, capped by Torres’s first career grand slam.
Prior to Monday, McClellan had thrown at least five innings in every appearance, and his seven earned runs are a career-high.
The Giants got on the board first when outfielder Cody Ross blasted a solo home run to left. The 438 foot bomb was his fourth of the season and the sixth longest round tripper hit by an opponent in Busch Stadium III history.
The Cardinals knotted the game at 2-2 in the third, when Ryan Theriot lined a double down the left field line, extending his hitting streak to a team-high 13 games. Allen Craig mirrored and scored Theriot before Albert Pujols drove an RBI single passed the outstretched glove of second baseman Freddy Sanchez.
With a brand new game, the Giants exploded for five runs off three hits in the fourth, tying their team-high for most runs scored in a single inning this season.
Pujols added a solo blast off Giants reliever Ramon Ramirez in the eighth, but the offense ran out of gas as the Giants took the first of a four game series.
- Craig has posted the highest batting average in the National League since May 19 ( 15-33, .455) and has hit safely in nine of his last 11 games…his two doubles are a single-game high.
- Theriot’s 13-game hitting streak ( 19-55, .345) is tied for the active lead in the NL with Buster Posey.
- Matt Holliday’s single in the sixth inning was his first hit since hitting a two-run home run in Kansas City on May 21.
- Pujols’ home run marked the first long ball at Busch Stadium for the Cardinal first baseman since April 23 versus Cincinnati…it was his 99th home run at Busch Stadium III and his 417th career home run (ranks 44th all-time- trails Jason Giambi for 43rd all time with 421).