– MLB – Box Score – Cardinals at Braves

That was a nice win.  (Leitch is going to go nuts.)  The Cards put up a 3-0 lead early, a two-run double in the second and a Pujols solo homer in the third.

Then, suddenly, the Braves started playing like the Braves, for nearly the first time this season.  Marcus hit a solo homer in the bottom of the third, then Renteria hit one to follow.  The game was halted by rain at this point, but when they came back Andruw drew a two-out walk, followed by a McCann homer, then Thorman singled in Francoeur (after a double) to make it 5-3.

Then Smoltz clamped down, getting them 1-2-3 in the next inning, and after the first two reached in the fifth he retired Pujols, Rolen, and Edmonds in order to get out of it.  Then he struck out the side in the sixth, after which he left the game with seven strikeouts and no walks.

Paronto got the first man in the seventh, but then allowed a double and a single to make it first and third, Pujols at the plate, and I think everyone thought that the game was lost… and Pujols’ rocket shot was a hard grounder to Betemit at third, who turned a double play to end the inning.  The Braves got another run on a Langerhans homer, Ray pitched a perfect eighth, and Sosa got the save, Marcus making a leaping catch of a line drive for the last out.

Two hits each for Giles, McCann, and Francoeur, and everyone reached base at least once.  Really nice win, and the first back-to-back wins in forever.