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Matheny's winner in 13th ends Rockies' streak

4/9/2003

DENVER (AP) -- Mike Matheny didn't get all of it, but he got enough.

Matheny's three-run homer in the 13th inning lifted the St.
Louis Cardinals to a wild 15-12 win over Colorado on Tuesday night,
ending the Rockies' four-game winning streak.

Scott Rolen led off the 13th with a walk. With one out, Eduardo
Perez singled and Matheny homered off Dan Miceli (0-1) just beyond
the reach of left fielder Gabe Kapler.

Cal Eldred (1-0), who entered with a 135.00 ERA, pitched two
perfect innings for the win.

The teams traded five-run innings, combined for 36 hits and used 15 pitchers. Except for four starting pitchers, St. Louis used all of its players, and the Rockies had only reliever Brian Fuentes and backup catcher Bobby Estalella still on the bench.

"This is a game we won't forget all year long,'' Cardinals manager Tony La Russa said, "because there were so many heroics, and it ended up with Cal, knowing he's the last guy out there, getting six outs. That's unbelievable.''

Matheny decided it with his first homer of the season.

"It's not like I crushed it, but I hit it good enough for this
park,'' Matheny said. "They told me (Kapler) had it in his glove.
We'll take it. It's great to see this team fight.''

St. Louis' Jim Edmonds had a three-run homer and matched career highs with four hits and five RBIs.

"I'm tired,'' Edmonds said. "In a game like this that goes so
long, you just hope nobody gets hurt and somebody wins eventually.
We were very lucky.''

Todd Helton had four hits and drove in three runs for the
Rockies. With three walks, he reached base in all seven plate
appearances. Jay Payton added four hits and two RBIs.

Colorado mounted a serious threat in the 11th, loading the bases
with one out. But Steve Kline induced Walker to hit into a 1-2-3
double play. Colorado also hit into double plays to end the eighth
and 10th innings and had a runner thrown out at the plate in the
ninth.

"We had ample opportunities to win this game, and we did not do
it,'' Rockies manager Clint Hurdle said. "We couldn't help
ourselves offensively, we couldn't score a run in the late
innings.''

Colorado went ahead 11-7 with a five-run sixth. Helton and Larry
Walker singled off Jeff Fassero and scored on Preston Wilson's
triple off Kiko Calero. Jose Hernandez hit an RBI single, and
Charles Johnson followed with a two-run homer.

St. Louis then had its own five-run outburst in the seventh, including two batters who were hit by pitches, two walks and three hits.

Facing Justin Speier, Edmonds doubled, Albert Pujols walked and
Rolen hit an RBI single. Tino Martinez was hit by a pitch, and
Perez also was hit while appearing to swing at an inside pitch,
forcing in a run and resulting in the ejection of Hurdle by first
base umpire Mike DiMuro.

Matheny walked, forcing in another run, and Fernando Vina
greeted reliever Javier Lopez with a two-run double.

Helton made it 12-12 with a solo homer in the Rockies' half off
Dustin Hermanson.

The crowd of 21,563 was a record low for the Rockies. The
previous low was 25,197 on Saturday.

Edmonds' two-run double helped the Cardinals take a 3-0 lead off
Aaron Cook in the first, but Colorado responded with two runs in
its half off Jason Simontacchi, including Helton's RBI single.

The Rockies went ahead 4-3 in the second on Payton's two-out,
two-run triple.

In the third, Edgar Renteria walked and scored on Pujols' double
to left-center.

Edmonds' third homer of the season -- into the second deck in
right field -- put the Cardinals back in front, 7-4, in the fourth.

Colorado cut the deficit to 7-6 in its half. Payton singled,
chasing Simontacchi, and Helton hit an RBI double off Lance
Painter. Helton went to third on a groundout and scored when third
baseman Rolen booted Wilson's sharp grounder for an error.

Simontacchi, making his season debut after going 11-5 for St.
Louis as a rookie last year, went three-plus innings, allowing seven hits and five runs.

Cook gave up seven hits and seven runs in five innings.

Game notes
Cardinals closer Jason Isringhausen, on the disabled list
following shoulder surgery last October, threw 25 pitches of
batting practice before the game. ... In a pregame ceremony, Walker
and Helton were presented with their 2002 Gold Glove Awards, the
third straight for each player and the seventh overall for Walker.
... The Cardinals were idle the previous two days, having been
rained out Sunday and an open date Monday. ... Edmonds has seven
extra-base hits in the last two games, tying the St. Louis record
set by Red Schoendienst in 1948.