<
>

Yoshii earns his first win since April 16

8/7/2002

ST. LOUIS (AP) -- Masato Yoshii made sure the St. Louis Cardinals will have to wait at least another day to break out of their slump.

Yoshii pitched a seven-hitter to win for the first time since
April 16, and the top three in the Montreal Expos' order began 8-for-8 Tuesday night in a 10-1 victory over St. Louis.

"He worked us over pretty good,'' Cardinals manager Tony La Russa said. "We made a lot of quick outs and it looks like we were flat, but I just give Yoshii the credit.''

Scott Rolen's first home game with the Cardinals was a quiet one after the 35-second standing ovation before his first at-bat. He was 0-for-4 with three groundouts, stranding three runners his first two at-bats, and is 0-for-19 since getting two hits in each of his first two games with St. Louis.

"I feel like I'm swinging the bat OK,'' Rolen said. "I probably got a little over-aggressive and swung at some pitches and got myself out. Tomorrow I'll come back and things will die down a little bit.''

The NL Central leaders are 1-6 since acquiring Rolen from Philadelphia on July 29 and have been outscored 41-13 in that stretch. They've lost six in a row for the first time since June 26-July 3 last year.

Another recent acquisition for the Cardinals, Chuck Finley, lasted only 2 2/3 innings in his second-shortest outing in 22
starts this season. Finley (2-2), making his fourth start since the Cardinals acquired him from Cleveland on July 19, gave up seven runs and seven hits, and forced in a pair of runs with bases-loaded walks.

"It's just a very unacceptable outing,'' Finley said. "When you put your team in a hole like that, then you don't get deep into the game, that's twice as bad.''

Yoshii (3-4) pitched his third career complete game, his first
since Aug. 18, 1999 against San Diego. He struck out four and
walked none, allowing a run-scoring wild pitch in the first. He's
split time between starting and the bullpen this season, and this
was his first victory since he won two of his first three outings this year.

"We had some runs in the first inning and that really helped me,'' Yoshii said through an interpreter. "I settled into a good rhythm.''

Expos leadoff hitter Jose Macias tied his career high with four hits, adding two RBI and three runs. No. 2 hitter Jose Vidro had three hits, including an RBI double, and also scored three runs,
and No. 3 hitter Vladimir Guerrero had two walks and an RBI double his first three at-bats.

"The two guys at the top set the table,'' manager Frank Robinson said. "They didn't want to have anything to do with Guerrero, so the top three guys were always on base.''

Macias' RBI single in the fifth made it 8-1. Vidro's
inning-ending popout was the first out by the top of the order.

Finley walked Fernando Tatis and Troy O'Leary with the bases
loaded in the first, and the Expos added three in the second on
Andres Galarraga's two-run single and a run-scoring wild pitch.

Macias' RBI double with two outs in the third chased Finley.
Vidro and Galarraga followed with RBI doubles off Luther Hackman for an 8-1 lead.

Game notes
Hackman, who replaced Finley in the third, had been the probable starter for Thursday in place of the demoted Travis Smith, with Matt Morris getting an extra day of rest. Morris is likely to
pitch Thursday. ... Closer Jason Isringhausen rejoined the
Cardinals after the birth of his first daughter, Madolyn, on Sunday
night. He missed one game. ... Finley's shortest outing was April
16, when he lasted 1 2/3 innings and gave up nine runs -- eight
earned -- in a 10-5 loss to the Chicago White Sox. ... Macias has three career four-hit games, the previous coming June 22 against the Indians.