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Cardinals thrash Arizona, 13-1
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 13      1   Final
09/23/2002 9:23 pm ET 
 Final 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 R H E
 D-Backs 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 6 2
 Cardinals 0 0 0 1 2 0 10 0 X 13 18 1
Cardinals thrash Arizona, 13-1
By Matthew Leach / MLB.com

ST. LOUIS -- Don't make your travel plans just yet, Cardinals fans. You might be staying home for the start of the National League Division Series.

St. Louis closed within two games of NL West-leading Arizona for the second-best record in the league by thrashing the Diamondbacks 13-1 at Busch Stadium on Monday night. The Cardinals have clinched the NL Central and will play the NL West champions in the first round of the playoffs. Home-field advantage will go to the team with the better record.

The Cardinals have won six of their last seven and 16 out of 19. Arizona has lost four in a row, and its magic numbers remain one to secure a postseason berth and three to win the West.

A close game turned into a blowout when St. Louis put up 10 runs in the seventh inning. At one point the Cardinals recorded four consecutive infield hits, and they also tallied nine straight base hits. The 13 runs were a season best for the Redbirds, who have scored 63 runs in their last seven games.

Jamey Wright pitched five solid innings in his first start since Sept. 4, allowing a run on three hits and walking five. But it took Wright a few batters to shake off the rust. With one out in the first, Junior Spivey cracked a solo homer to put Arizona on the board. Wright walked Erubiel Durazo after that, but settled down from there. He gave up a hit and a pair of walks over the next three innings.

In the bottom of the fourth, St. Louis tied the game. Tino Martinez lined a one-out double to left, then scored on Edgar Renteria's single to right. The shortstop had a pair of hits drove in two runs, giving him a career-best 78 RBIs on the season.

Wright got into some trouble in the fifth. He issued a leadoff walk to Diamondbacks starter Rick Helling, and Tony Womack followed with a single. But Spivey hit a ball right at Albert Pujols, who started a 5-3 double play. Durazo walked again before Quinton McCracken grounded out, and that was all for Wright.

The right-hander had lasted just long enough. In the bottom of the fifth, the Cardinals offense turned him into the winning pitcher. Marrero continued his torrid hitting with a single to left, and Jim Edmonds followed with a single of his own. Pujols lifted an RBI double to right, and J.D. Drew drove in the third with a sacrifice fly to left.

And then the floodgates opened. Marrero actually started the big inning with a groundout to short. But pinch-hitter So Taguchi followed with a walk, and Pujols singled. After Tino Martinez flied out to center, Miguel Cairo knocked a pinch-single for an RBI. Three more infield hits scored two more runs and loaded the bases, then Marrero struck the biggest blow with a three-run double.

Run-scoring singles by Taguchi, Pujols and Eduardo Perez (pinch-hitting for Martinez) capped the 10-run rally. It was the second-biggest inning of the year for St. Louis, and the team's second double-digit outburst in September. The Cardinals put up 11 runs in an inning against the Cubs on Sept. 6.

Matthew Leach is a reporter for MLB.com. He can be reached at Matthew_H_Leach@yahoo.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.


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BOX SCORE
St Louis Cardinals 13, Arizona Diamondbacks 1
Arizona Diamondbacks
BatterPosABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
WomackSS 4020000.274
BellSS 0000100.128
Spivey2B 5121014.302
Durazo1B 2000212.260
ManteiP 0000000.000
d-OverbayPH 1000001.125
GonzalezLF 2000012.288
McCrackenRF 2010002.316
FinleyCF 2010101.283
b-LittlePH-CF 1000011.190
MillerC 3000002.252
KoploveP 0000000.000
SwindellP 0000000.000
Colbrunn1B 1000011.327
DellucciRF-LF 3000022.249
c-JosePH-LF 0000100.167
Donnels3B 0000100.231
a-CintronPH-3B 3000004.213
HellingP 1000101.045
BarajasC 2000010.207
Totals321617823
a-Grounded out for Donnels in the 4th. b-Struck out for Finley in the 8th. c-Walked for Dellucci in the 8th. d-Popped out for Mantei in the 9th.
BATTING
HR: Spivey (14, 1st inning off Wright, 0 on, 1 out).
RBI: Spivey (74).
Runners left in scoring position, 2 out: Cintron 2, McCracken, Durazo.
GIDP: Spivey.
Team LOB: 11.
FIELDING
E: Durazo (7, fielding), McCracken (1, throw).
Outfield assists: Finley (Marrero at 3rd base).
 
St Louis Cardinals
BatterPosABRHRBIBBSOLOBAVG
Vina2B 5111010.270
e-DiFelicePH-C 0000100.230
MarreroLF-RF 6243002.265
EdmondsCF 2110112.313
a-TaguchiPH-CF 1211100.462
Pujols3B 5232001.315
KlineP 0000000.000
CrudaleP 0000000.000
MolinaP 0000000.000
Martinez1B 3110102.265
c-PerezPH-1B-3B 1011000.208
DrewRF 2001011.253
FasseroP 0000000.333
b-CairoPH-3B-2B 2111011.259
RenteriaSS 4122012.310
DelgadoSS 1000000.167
MathenyC 3111100.245
d-CruzPH-1B 1010000.400
WrightP 2000022.132
RobinsonLF 3110021.260
Totals411318135914
a-Walked for Edmonds in the 7th. b-Singled for Fassero in the 7th. c-Singled for Martinez in the 7th. d-Singled for Matheny in the 8th. e-Walked for Vina in the 8th.
BATTING
2B: Marrero 2 (19, Helling, Swindell), Martinez (25, Helling), Pujols 2 (39, Helling, Swindell).
RBI: Renteria 2 (78), Pujols 2 (126), Drew (50), Cairo (22), Matheny (34), Vina (53), Marrero 3 (64), Taguchi (2), Perez (26).
2-out RBI: Renteria 2, Cairo, Matheny, Vina, Marrero 3, Taguchi, Pujols, Perez.
SF: Drew.
Runners left in scoring position, 2 out: Edmonds, Wright, Renteria 2, Marrero.
Team LOB: 10.
FIELDING
E: Renteria (19, throw).
DP: (Pujols-Martinez).
Arizona Diamondbacks
PitcherIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Helling (L, 9-12) 5.07333604.51
Koplove 1.24551103.00
Swindell 0.06550006.27
Mantei 1.11001204.38
St Louis Cardinals
PitcherIPHRERBBSOHRERA
Wright (W, 7-13) 5.03115315.29
Fassero (H, 12) 2.02000305.37
Kline 0.01000003.64
Crudale 1.00001201.95
Molina 1.00001001.59
Kline pitched to 1 batter in the 8th.
Swindell pitched to 6 batters in the 7th.

WP: Koplove.
IBB: Matheny (by Helling), Martinez (by Helling).
Pitches-strikes: Helling 90-55, Koplove 38-25, Swindell 18-12, Mantei 27-16, Wright 85-44, Fassero 24-19, Kline 5-4, Crudale 15-9, Molina 10-5.
Ground outs-fly outs: Helling 2-6, Koplove 3-1, Swindell 0-0, Mantei 1-1, Wright 9-3, Fassero 2-1, Kline 0-0, Crudale 0-1, Molina 0-3.
Batters faced: Helling 25, Koplove 10, Swindell 6, Mantei 6, Wright 22, Fassero 8, Kline 1, Crudale 4, Molina 4.
Inherited runners-scored: Swindell 2-2, Mantei 1-0, Crudale 1-0.
Umpires: HP: Andrew Fletcher. 1B: Derryl Cousins. 2B: Marty Foster. 3B: Joe Brinkman.
Weather: 71 degrees, clear.
Wind: 8 mph, Out to LF.
T: 3:16.
Att: 30,568.

Box score official statistics approved by Major League Baseball and the Office of the Commissioner