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Pujols homers, Cards get to Padres' Bell in 9th

May 24, 2011 - 6:41 AM San Diego, CA (Sports Network) - Daniel Descalso drove in the winning run in the ninth as the St. Louis Cardinals opened a three-game set against the San Diego Padres with a 3-1 win.

Albert Pujols hit his first home run in a month while Ryan Theriot added an RBI single in the ninth inning for the Cardinals, who have won three straight and seven of eight.

Kyle Lohse (6-2) worked eight innings in the start to pick up the win as he gave up just one run and five hits with a walk and five strikeouts.

Jorge Cantu drove in the lone run while Cameron Maybin had two hits and scored for the Padres, who have dropped four straight and six of seven.

Dustin Moseley had a solid start as he was charged with just one run and five hits with three walks and three strikeouts over seven innings.

"When he's on, all four pitches are working for him, and I think we saw that tonight," Padres manager Bud Black said of his starter.

Heath Bell (2-1) took the loss for giving up two runs and three hits in the ninth.

With the score tied in the ninth and Bell on the mound, Skip Shcumaker hit a one-out double and Descalso followed with a single to give St. Louis the lead. Theriot later singled home an insurance run for a 3-1 lead.

Brian Tallet struck out Brad Hawpe to start the ninth and Fernando Salas then took the mound. After Chase Headley struck out, Maybin reached base with a single, but Orlando Hudson then flied out to left and Salas picked up his eighth save of the season.

Pujols' homer in the sixth, his first since April 23 against Cincinnati, was the first run of the game. It had been a career-high 27 games and 105 at-bats between home runs for the slugger.

"Every at-bat is a tough one for him," Cardinals manager Tony LaRussa said of Pujols. "They're pitching to him like he's hitting .350."

The Padres tied the game in the seventh, but wasted an opportunity to take the lead. Headley led off with a double and Maybin beat out the throw to first on his bunt to put runners on the corners.

Hudson then hit a sharp grounder to first and Pujols went home to get Headley caught in a rundown. Cantu then tied the game with a sac fly to center, but Kyle Phillips struck out to end the frame.

Game Notes

San Diego took two of three from St. Louis in the opening series of the season...Lohse, who lowered his earned run average to 2.06, is 3-3 in eight career starts against the Padres...Kyle McClellan pitches for St. Louis on Tuesday and will be opposed by Aaron Harang for San Diego.