Alexa
  • Directory of Taiwan

Cardinals return home upbeat

Cardinals return home upbeat

The St. Louis Cardinals pledged a different look in October than they offered in September.
Once again Thursday they kept their promise.
Heeding pitching coach Dave Duncan's strategy to confound a lefthanded lineup with breaking balls, Jeff Weaver offered five shutout innings and his bullpen followed with four more airtight ones to give the Cardinals a 2-0 win over the San Diego Padres in Game 2 of a one-sided first-round series.
In front of a Petco Park crowd of 43,463, Weaver celebrated the three-month anniversary of his trade from the Los Angeles Angels with a performance that drew praise from the team he held to four hits.
"He did a great job of throwing the breaking balls for strikes," Padres left fielder Dave Roberts said. "I don't remember any staff that has thrown that many curveballs for strikes."
Supported by strong defense and the second game-winning RBI from first baseman Albert Pujols in three days, Weaver and his fresh-faced bullpen extended the Cardinals' postseason mastery over the NL West champions. Their reward is a possible clincher in Game 3 on Saturday at Busch Stadium.
The Cardinals on Thursday celebrated the transformation of a pitcher considered a lost cause by his previous team. The bruised, underachieving talent they acquired offered a poised performance that included just two hits and three walks.
"You have to have confidence. If a couple guys got on base in Anaheim, I was trying to strike the next guy out instead of just making quality pitches," said Weaver, dealt after opening the season 3-10 for the Angels. "Now if some guys get on base I'm not trying to do too much. I'm trying to get the guy to put it on the ground."
A team written off by many following a difficult September now shows strength.
"They were putting together a funeral, but the corpse has jumped out of the box," Cardinals secretary-treasurer Drew Baur told a receptive clubhouse.


Updated : 2021-04-23 17:11 GMT+08:00