Carpenter fans 11 in four-hit shutout

ST. LOUIS (AP) -- All June, the story was the same with Chris
Carpenter. Dominant pitching, followed by predictable

Carpenter pitched a four-hitter and Yadier Molina, Jim Edmonds
and Albert Pujols homered Saturday night to lead the St. Louis
Cardinals over the Pittsburgh Pirates 8-0.

Carpenter (11-4) struck out 11 and walked none in his eighth
career shutout, his third this season and second in three starts --
including a one-hitter at Toronto on June 14. He improved to 4-1
with an 0.90 ERA in June, and has allowed one run and nine hits in
26 innings spanning his last three starts, lowering his ERA to

He likely won't get another start this month due to the
Cardinals' day off on Monday and manager Tony La Russa's preference
to give his starters an extra day of rest.

"I made a lot of good pitches, kept the ball down in the strike
zone," Carpenter said. "I repeat a lot of things that I say but
that's what makes you effective."

Carpenter, who tied Florida's Dontrelle Willis for the major
league lead in shutouts, retired his first seven batters with no
balls hit to the outfield, striking out the side in the second. He
also helped himself at the plate with his first RBI of the season
on a squeeze bunt that made it 5-0 in the fourth.

"He hit my target every pitch," said Molina, the Cardinals'
catcher. "That's amazing. I don't know how he does it."

St. Louis, an NL-best 47-27, has homered eight times in the last
two games while outscoring the Pirates 16-1. The Cardinals have won
14 of their last 15 games against Pittsburgh.

"That's a strong lineup," the Pirates' Mark Redman (4-6) said.
"That's why they made it to the World Series last year. They
capitalize on every bad pitch and hit it out of the ballpark."

Edmonds has homered three times in the last two games, and
Molina has two homers to help the Cardinals put a three-game losing
streak behind them.

"We played some pretty mediocre baseball for three or four days
and now we've gotten some good pitching and some hitting," Edmonds
said. "It's just the game, just the way it goes.

"You never know what you're going to get each night you walk on
the field."

Redman gave up five runs and eight hits in five innings,
surrendering Molina's solo shot and Edmonds two-run homer in a
three-run third. In his last two outings he's given up 11 runs in
12 innings, and he's lost both starts against the Cardinals while
allowing 11 runs in nine innings.

"They hit all of my mistakes and they got out to an early
lead," Redman said. "Chris could just cruise after that."

Pittsburgh has dropped 10 of 13 overall and is 4-12 in its last
16 road games.

Three straight singles, including a run-scoring hit by So
Taguchi, and a balk by Redman highlighted the fourth. Carpenter's
squeeze on a 2-1 pitch drove in the second run.

Pujols connected off Ryan Vogelsong, pitching for the first time
in six days, in the seventh for his 20th homer.

Game notes
Carpenter has 16 career complete games. ... Of Edmonds' 13
homers, only six have come with runners on. But the last three have
been two-run drives. ... Pirates pitchers have allowed at least one
homer in seven straight games, totaling 15 in that stretch. ...
Matt Lawton, who was 1-for-4 with two strikeouts and a groundout,
is 4-for-32 against Cardinals pitching. ... Taguchi, who had two
homers on Friday and two hits on Saturday, is 23-for-55 (.418) in
his last 15 starts. ... The paid crowd of 48,413 gave the Cardinals
11 sellouts in their last 12 games. ... After the game the Pirates
optioned LHP Mike Johnston to Triple-A Indianapolis and recalled
RHP Ian Snell. ... Pujols has scored an NL-high 26 runs in June.