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Marquis haunts former team again in Cubs win

Apr 28, 2007 - 7:00 AM ST. LOUIS (Ticker) -- The St. Louis Cardinals did not give Jason Marquis a chance to help in the postseason last year. As an opponent, he has not given his former team much of a chance.

Marquis pitched six-plus strong innings and Felix Pie hit his first major league homer as the Chicago Cubs notched a 5-3 victory over the Cardinals in the first game of a three-game set at Busch Stadium.

Marquis (3-1), who won 42 games in three seasons with St. Louis but did not pitch in the playoffs last season, allowed three runs and five hits with three walks as he downed his former team for the second time this week. The righthander yielded seven hits over seven innings as the Cubs downed the Cardinals on April 21.

"I thought he threw better tonight," Cardinals third baseman Scott Rolen said. "He threw well the last time we faced him. Tonight, he threw more strikes and was efficient. He kept the ball down, he was mixing the ball up and did a good job. He gets out of situations because he has good movement on the ball."

"I was just trying to attack the strike zone all night," Marquis said. "I was having them get some early swings. I was executing my pitches and allowed my defense to take care of the rest."

Marquis has given up three or fewer earned runs in each of his five starts for Chicago, which ended their four-game losing streak in St. Louis.

"He's been pitching great all year," Cubs third baseman Aramis Ramirez said. "With a little more offense, I think he should be 5-0."

Trailing 1-0 in the fourth inning, Ramirez and Pie each blasted two-run shots off Cardinals starter Anthony Reyes (0-4).

"I threw two pitches that came over the middle of the plate," Reyes said. "I can't do that up here (in the majors). That inning, I got behind a little bit and I left those up in the zone."

Pie, the prized prospect that gave the Cubs the option of playing free agent acquisition Alfonso Soriano in his more familiar left field surroundings, doubled his career RBI total with the home run.

"It (the homer) was very exciting," Pie said. "I was running the bases hard and when I touched home plate I saw the ball was gone. This is very exciting.

"I know I can hit. Everybody in this organization knows I can hit. I'm taking my shot and getting my opportunity to play. I feel comfortable now."

The Cardinals were unable to convert prime scoring opportunities in each of the last two innings as three Chicago relievers struggled to record two outs after Marquis left the game.

With the Cardinals down just 4-3 in the eighth, Cubs closer Ryan Dempster worked out of a one-out, bases-loaded jam by striking out Preston Wilson and forcing Adam Kennedy into an inning-ending groundout.

"I've seen (Dempster) before," Wilson said. "I know what he does, I just had a really bad at-bat. I just didn't get the job done."

"I was just trying to make a pitch and we got out of it," Dempster said. "When I got ahead, I didn't want to get beat with my second or third pitch. Tonight, my slider was my best pitch."

After Yadier Molina singled to open the ninth inning, pinch hitter Scott Spiezio launched a line drive down the right field line that just narrowly missed the foul pole. Dempster rallied to strike out Spiezio.

"I had a pretty good angle on it," Cubs manager Lou Piniella said. "I knew it wasn't going to be on the fair side, it might have hit the foul pole but I knew it wasn't going to be on the fair side.

"Dempster did a heck of a job."

Dempster easily retired the next two batters for his fourth save in as many chances.

"I knew (Pujols) was on deck," Dempster said. "I was just trying to focus and make pitches to Duncan. He's a guy that can tie the game with one swing there. He swings the bat well against us, so I just tried to make my pitches to him."

Reyes ended up on the losing end of a Marquis-pitched contest for the second time in six days. The righthander, who dropped to 0-4 lifetime against the Cubs, surrendered four runs and four hits with two walks and five strikeouts.

"That one inning they got him," Cardinals manager Tony La Russa said. "He's just a weapon or two away from being really outstanding. Sometimes, not having that weapon in his bag (can) cost him something."

Molina homered and tallied three hits for the Cardinals, who failed in their attempt to win three straight home games for the first time this season.






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    Cubs vs. CardinalsJul 26 9:20 PM


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    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    CHICAGO CUBS 0 0 0 4 0 0 0 0 1 5 7 1
    ST LOUIS 0 0 1 0 0 0 2 0 0 3 9 1 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: CHN - JASON MARQUIS, WILL OHMAN (7TH), MIKE WUERTZ (7TH), NEAL COTTS
    (8TH), RYAN DEMPSTER (8TH) AND MICHAEL BARRETT
    STL - ANTHONY REYES, TYLER JOHNSON (7TH), KELVIN

    Apr 27 11:03 PM


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    AT ST LOUIS - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY CESAR IZTURIS SCORED MATT MURTON.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, C IZTURIS ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 5
    ST LOUIS 3 TOP, 9TH
    DUE UP FOR CHICAGO CUBS: A SORIANO (.266, 1-FOR-4)

    Cubs vs. CardinalsApr 27 10:50 PM
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    Cubs vs. CardinalsApr 27 10:50 PM
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    Cubs vs. CardinalsApr 27 10:42 PM


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    AT ST LOUIS - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY YADIER MOLINA (1) TO LEFT WITH 2 OUT IN
    THE 7TH OFF JASON MARQUIS SCORED JIM EDMONDS.
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 4, ST LOUIS 3
    DUE UP FOR ST LOUIS: T JOHNSON (.000, 0 HR, 0 RBI)

    Cubs vs. CardinalsApr 27 10:01 PM


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    AT ST LOUIS - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY FELIX PIE (1) TO RIGHT CENTER WITH 2
    OUT IN THE 4TH OFF ANTHONY REYES SCORED MARK DEROSA.
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 4, ST LOUIS 1
    DUE UP FOR CHICAGO CUBS: J MARQUIS (.250, 0-FOR-1)

    Cubs vs. CardinalsApr 27 9:16 PM


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    AT ST LOUIS - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY ARAMIS RAMIREZ (5) TO LEFT WITH 0 OUT
    IN THE 4TH OFF ANTHONY REYES SCORED DERREK LEE.
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 2, ST LOUIS 1
    DUE UP FOR CHICAGO CUBS: M BARRETT (.290, 0-FOR-1)

    Cubs vs. CardinalsApr 27 9:11 PM


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    AT ST LOUIS - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY SCOTT ROLEN SCORED CHRIS DUNCAN.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, 0 LEFT ON, 3 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: CHICAGO CUBS 0
    ST LOUIS 1 END BOTTOM, 3RD

    Cubs vs. CardinalsApr 27 9:06 PM