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Encarnacion, Thompson lead Cardinals over Rockies

Jun 1, 2007 - 5:12 AM DENVER (Ticker) -- The St. Louis Cardinals' awakening offense earned the team a series split with the Colorado Rockies.

Juan Encarnacion drove in three runs and Brad Thompson pitched 7 1/3 solid innings for the Cardinals en route to a 7-3 win over the Rockies on Thursday.

Scott Rolen continued his recent hot streak with a two-hit night and backup catcher Gary Bennett filled in nicely for the injured Yadier Molina with a three-hit, two-RBI night.

Encarnacion had just one hit Thursday, but it proved to be the big blow as he came through with a bases-loaded double in the sixth to turn a 2-1 deficit into a 4-2 advantage. The veteran slugger has been slow to get started this season, and his three-run hit doubled his season RBI total.

"Well, we got him in trouble in that inning," Encarnacion said of Rockies starter Aaron Cook. "His ball was moving pretty good but he got behind in the count and I got a good swing on it. I knew it was going to be a sinker down but it stayed right in the middle of the plate."

Thompson (4-1) made sure the lead held up. The 25-year-old righthander yielded two runs and seven hits. After allowing two runs and five hits in the first three innings, Thompson settled down to earn his third win in just his fifth start.

"Damage control is a good thing," Thompson said. "I was forced to get out of some things, and I had some great defense behind me. It's nice to be able to throw starter innings and go further in the game and save the bullpen."

Thompson improved to 2-0 with a 2.19 ERA in two starts against Colorado this season.

"They had a chance with the kind of hitters they have, and we escaped without a mark," Cardinals manager Tony La Russa said. "That was huge. He got in trouble by getting the ball up and he made pitches to get out of it."

Rolen's two hits lifted his average to .482 (14-for-29) over his last nine games. The veteran slugger began the season in a horrible slump, hitting just .209 before his recent tear.

Cook (4-2) lasted seven frames, surrendering five runs and six hits to end his run of seven straight starts without a loss.

"I just got the ball up tonight, and that's what happens when you get the ball up," Cook said. "Unfortunately it was only that one inning that hurt me right there, and it only takes one inning to lose a game."

The Rockies got on the board in the first on Matt Holliday's RBI single and added their second run on an RBI groundout by rookie Troy Tulowitzki.

"We let a series get away," Rockies manager Clint Hurdle said. "We had two shots to close down a series and we didn't get it done."

Following Encarnacion's double, Bennett increased the lead to 5-2 with a single to center. Bennett should be seeing a lot of playing time in the near future with Molina expected to be out 4-6 weeks with a broken wrist. The veteran backup added another RBI in the eighth, plating Rolen.

"We always look at who's playing and who's not playing, and every one of them is a major leaguer and they give us a chance," La Russa said.








  • NL
    FINAL
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
    - - - - - - - - - - - -
    ST LOUIS 0 1 0 0 0 4 0 2 0 7 10 1
    COLORADO 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 3 8 1 (FINAL)

    BATTERIES: STL - BRAD THOMPSON, RANDY FLORES (8TH), RUSS SPRINGER (9TH) AND
    GARY BENNETT
    COL - AARON COOK, RAMON RAMIREZ (8TH), JORGE JULIO
    (9TH) AND CHRIS IANNETTA

    HOME RU

    May 31 11:32 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    SACRIFICE FLY BY CHRIS IANNETTA SCORED BRAD HAWPE.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, NONE ON, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ST LOUIS 7
    COLORADO 3 BOTTOM, 9TH
    DUE UP FOR COLORADO: J JULIO (.000, 0 HR, 0 RBI)

    Cardinals vs. RockiesMay 31 11:31 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY GARY BENNETT SCORED SCOTT ROLEN.
    SITUATION: 2 RUNS IN, G BENNETT ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ST LOUIS 7
    COLORADO 2 TOP, 8TH
    DUE UP FOR ST LOUIS: A KENNEDY (.230, 1-FOR-3, RBI)

    Cardinals vs. RockiesMay 31 11:05 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY SCOTT ROLEN SCORED SCOTT SPIEZIO.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, S ROLEN ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ST LOUIS 6
    COLORADO 2 TOP, 8TH
    DUE UP FOR ST LOUIS: J ENCARNACION (.226, 1-FOR-3, 3 RBI)

    Cardinals vs. RockiesMay 31 11:02 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY GARY BENNETT SCORED JUAN ENCARNACION.
    SITUATION: 4 RUNS IN, G BENNETT ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ST LOUIS 5
    COLORADO 2 TOP, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR ST LOUIS: A KENNEDY (.232, 1-FOR-2, RBI)

    Cardinals vs. RockiesMay 31 10:35 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY JUAN ENCARNACION SCORED SO TAGUCHI, JIM EDMONDS
    AND SCOTT ROLEN.
    SITUATION: 3 RUNS IN, J ENCARNACION ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ST LOUIS 4
    COLORADO 2 TOP, 6TH
    DUE UP FOR ST LOUIS: G BENNETT (.220, 1-FOR-2)

    Cardinals vs. RockiesMay 31 10:33 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    GROUND OUT BY TROY TULOWITZKI SCORED GARRETT ATKINS.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, NONE ON, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ST LOUIS 1
    COLORADO 2 BOTTOM, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR COLORADO: C IANNETTA (.198, 1 HR, 9 RBI)

    Cardinals vs. RockiesMay 31 9:36 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY ADAM KENNEDY SCORED JUAN ENCARNACION.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, A KENNEDY ON FIRST, G BENNETT ON SECOND, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ST LOUIS 1
    COLORADO 1 TOP, 2ND
    DUE UP FOR ST LOUIS: B THOMPSON (.000, 0 HR, 0 RBI)

    Cardinals vs. RockiesMay 31 9:28 PM


  • NL
    AT COLORADO - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY MATT HOLLIDAY SCORED RYAN SPILBORGHS.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, M HOLLIDAY ON FIRST, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ST LOUIS 0
    COLORADO 1 BOTTOM, 1ST
    DUE UP FOR COLORADO: T HELTON (.343, 5 HR, 27 RBI)

    Cardinals vs. RockiesMay 31 9:17 PM