Final in 10

Series: Game 2 of 2

Series tied 1-1 (as of 5/10)

Game 1: Friday, May 9
St. Louis6Final
Chi Cubs3
Game 2: Saturday, May 10
St. Louis2Final
in 10
Chi Cubs3
Game 3: Sunday, May 11
St. LouisPostponed
Chi Cubs

Cardinals 2

(18-17, 8-13 away)

Cubs 3

(20-16, 12-9 home)

    2:20 PM ET, May 10, 2003

    Wrigley Field, Chicago, Illinois 

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    STL 0100000010 2 5 0
    CHC 0000011001 3 10 0

    W: M. Remlinger (1-0)

    L: C. Eldred (2-1)

    Gonzalez has five game-ending homers at Wrigley

    CHICAGO (AP) -- Alex Gonzalez keeps delivering the late-inning homers for the Chicago Cubs, an uncanny display of clutch hitting that even he can't explain.

    "It's unbelievable it happened again," Gonzalez said Saturday when his 10th-inning homer sent the Chicago Cubs to a 3-2 win over the St. Louis Cardinals.

    "To have that many in two years is something I would never have expected."

    Saturday's solo shot off Cal Eldred was Gonzalez's third 10th-inning homer this season. And in his first two seasons with the Cubs, he's hit five game-ending homers at Wrigley Field.

    "I'm aware it's happened in the past and that I've been able to do it, but I'm not going up there trying to hit home runs," Gonzalez said.

    Gonzalez's latest late-inning shot came on a day when the Cubs lost star Sammy Sosa, who was placed on the 15-day disabled list earlier in the day after having the toenail removed from his right big toe.

    Gonzalez has four homers this season, three of them in the 10th inning. He also homered in the 10th on May 1 at San Francisco and on May 4 against Colorado at Wrigley Field.

    "What Alex has been doing is just amazing," Cubs starter Kerry Wood said.

    "I asked Larry Rothschild if Alex could it again and he said, 'Yeah, I think so,'" Cubs manager Dusty Baker said. "The next thing the ball is out of the park. It's been awesome."

    Last May, Gonzalez hit a game-winning homer against the Cardinals off then St. Louis reliever Mike Timlin.

    "That's a special quality to hit home runs late in the game and win it and he's done it," Cardinals manager Tony La Russa said.

    "We knew his history coming in. He got a breaking ball with a 3-2 count, that's a nice piece of hitting."

    Eldred (2-1), who spent most of his career in the AL where Gonzalez once played with the Blue Jays, got his first loss since joining the Cardinals.

    "I have faced Alex quite a bit, but it's been a few years," Eldred said. "You stick with your plan and go with your strengths and what you feel's right at the time. It could've been the right pitch, but it wasn't the right location."

    Mike Remlinger (1-0) pitched the top of the 10th to get his first victory with the Cubs.

    The Cardinals tied it in the ninth as Cubs reliever Joe Borowski blew his first save in seven chances.

    Edgar Renteria walked with one out, stole second and scored on pinch-hitter J.D. Drew's single.

    Wood threw a career-high 141 pitches in seven innings, allowing just four hits.

    "I didn't want to take him to 141, but he was throwing better at 120 than he was at 20," Baker said.

    "I didn't seem like that many. But I'm not worried about how many I threw," Wood said.

    Cardinals starter Woody Williams escaped his first loss when St. Louis scored in the ninth. Williams allowed eight hits and two runs in eight innings, walking one and striking out nine.

    Chicago took a 2-1 lead in the seventh when Corey Patterson, who'd earlier made a baserunning gaffe, tripled and scored on Mark Grudzielanek's single.

    Scott Rolen hit his third homer in six games and eighth of the season to give the Cardinals a 1-0 lead in the second.

    Moises Alou's fourth homer, a solo shot in the sixth with two outs, tied the game.

    Williams didn't allow a hit until Troy O'Leary _ a late replacement for Sosa -- singled in the fourth.

    The Cubs ran themselves out of a run in the fifth when they collected three straight singles but didn't score. Patterson hit a soft single and Grudzielanek's grounder in the hole appeared headed to right field, Patterson went for third and was tagged out.

    Game notes
    Cubs manager Dusty Baker, on some advice of a fellow fisherman, dropped the struggling Grudzielanek out of the leadoff spot and replaced him with Mark Bellhorn. Even though Grudzielanek entered Saturday's game hitting 55 points higher than Bellhorn, he was in a 6-or-47 slide. But when Baker was told Bellhorn performed well as a leadoff hitter in the final month last season, he looked it up and made the switch. ... Wood's previous career high for pitches was 133 against the Reds in 1998.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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