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Ramirez, Vanden Hurk lead Marlins past Cards

Jul 18, 2007 - 3:58 AM MIAMI (Ticker) -- Hanley Ramirez made sure Rick Vanden Hurk's third stint with the Florida Marlins would be yet another successful one.

Ramirez extended his hitting streak to nine games with a two-run home run and an RBI double and Vanden Hurk tossed five scoreless innings to lead Florida to a 4-0 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals on Tuesday.

Just called up from Class AAA Albuquerque, the righthander escaped several early jams before finishing with six strikeouts and three walks for his first win at Dolphin Stadium.

"It's just been awesome," Vanden Hurk said of his good fortunes in the majors. "I'm feeling more and more comfortable each time I come up, and I feel I have a lot more experience."

Vanden Hurk (3-2) also won games the previous two times he was brought up from the minors. He was the pitcher of record in wins at Atlanta on June 5, and at Kansas City on June 16.

"I know what I have to do, I'm here to help the team win,' Vanden Hurk said. "I take the attitude that I have a job to do and I just have to execute each pitch."

St. Louis helped out Vanden Hurk, stranding six runners over the first three innings. The Cardinals squandered their best opportunity to score with runners on second and third and no outs in the third inning, and also left runners on second and third with two outs in the second.

"He (Vanden Hurk) had a couple of tough innings, but to his credit he worked his way out of them," Florida manager Fredi Gonzalez said. "That's why we keep bringing him up because he takes the right approach to the game."

Ramirez, named the National League Player of the Week earlier this month, staked Florida to a l-0 advantage with a double to right driving in Alfredo Amezaga, who singled and reached second base on a sacrifice bunt by Vanden Hurk.

A native of Eindhoven, Netherlands, the Marlins' starter threw 98 pitches in his five innings of work before being pinch-hit for by Joe Borchard, whose single to left preceded Ramirez' 417-foot blast into a tunnel above the left-field scoreboard.

"I want to motivate the team to be successful. He threw me a sinker and I got it," Ramirez said. "We need to win now, and I want to help us do that every chance I get."

Vanden Hurk had lost his last two decisions in South Florida.

"I'm very happy to get one here (in Miami)," Vanden Hurk said. "I was keeping the fastball down in the zone, but location in general I've been working on (down in the minors) and it's paying off."

St. Louis starter Brad Thompson (6-4), making his first career start against Florida, allowed three runs on seven hits. The Cardinals had won eight of the previous 10 games in which the righthander started.

"I'm just mad at myself for making a few mistakes," Thompson said. "I was just a pitch or two away. It's just frustrating, a frustrating day."

The Marlins, who have won three of their last four games at home, increased their lead to 4-0 in the seventh when Dan Uggla singled home Todd Linden, who ripped a pinch-hit double to left.

Uggla was 1-for-14 in the second half with one RBI prior to his single in the seventh.

"It's been pretty ugly for me. I'll take any (hit) I can get right now," Uggla said. "Those hits have been few and far between. They pay me to produce and it's nice to do that for a change."

Justin Miller, Matt Lindstrom, Armando Benitez, Lee Gardner and Taylor Tankersley combined to allow two hits over the final four innings to complete the shutout.

"I'll tell you, the pen has been getting it done for us more often that not," Gonzalez said. "We get five out of Vandy and they come in and finish it off. You can't ask for anything more."

For St. Louis manager Tony La Russa, the reason for the loss was clear-cut.

"We didn't have any offense. We let a few opportunities slip away but basically the bats were not there," La Russa said. (Thompson) left a few pitches up and there's three runs."








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

    BATTERIES: STL - BRAD THOMPSON, RUSS SPRINGER (7TH), TROY CATE (7TH), ANDY
    CAVAZOS (8TH) AND YADIER MOLINA
    FLA - RICK VANDEN HURK, JUSTIN MILLER (6TH), MATT
    LINDSTROM (7TH),

    Jul 17 9:44 PM


  • NL
    AT FLORIDA - SCORING UPDATE
    SINGLE BY DAN UGGLA SCORED TODD LINDEN.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, D UGGLA ON FIRST, 2 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ST LOUIS 0
    FLORIDA 4 BOTTOM, 7TH
    DUE UP FOR FLORIDA: M CABRERA (.326, 1-FOR-2, HBP)

    Cardinals vs. MarlinsJul 17 9:05 PM


  • NL
    AT FLORIDA - SCORING UPDATE
    TWO-RUN HOME RUN BY HANLEY RAMIREZ (15) TO LEFT WITH 1 OUT
    IN THE 5TH OFF BRAD THOMPSON SCORED JOE BORCHARD.
    CURRENT SCORE: ST LOUIS 0, FLORIDA 3
    DUE UP FOR FLORIDA: D UGGLA (.241, 0-FOR-1, BB)

    Cardinals vs. MarlinsJul 17 8:26 PM


  • NL
    AT FLORIDA - SCORING UPDATE
    DOUBLE BY HANLEY RAMIREZ SCORED ALFREDO AMEZAGA.
    SITUATION: 1 RUN IN, H RAMIREZ ON SECOND, 1 OUT
    CURRENT SCORE: ST LOUIS 0
    FLORIDA 1 BOTTOM, 3RD
    DUE UP FOR FLORIDA: D UGGLA (.241, 0-FOR-1)

    Cardinals vs. MarlinsJul 17 7:56 PM