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Luna's 3-run HR caps outburst

5/6/2004

PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- St. Louis manager Tony La Russa expected a
high-scoring game where the bullpens would get stretched thin.

Instead, the Cardinals' relievers kept it under control.

Hector Luna's three-run homer capped a five-run first inning and
the Cardinals got three scoreless innings from five relievers for a
7-4 win over the Philadelphia Phillies on Thursday.

"It looked like it would be a 12-10 game," La Russa said.
"Our bullpen had a great series. This is a tough park to pitch in.
This is a tough lineup. You can only pat them so much. This is May
and they're going to be out there until the end."

The Cardinals quickly ended Randy Wolf's 21-inning scoreless
streak and improved to 9-3 on the road.

It's their best road start since they were 10-2 in 1946. They
won the three-game series thanks to nine scoreless innings overall
from the bullpen.

Jeff Suppan (3-3) pitched six shaky innings, allowing six hits
and four runs. But the Cardinals got a break in the first inning on
an error and another misplayed ball which helped score four
unearned runs.

Jason Isringhausen got four outs for his fourth save. He came in
the eighth with runners on first and second and two out, and got
pinch-hitter Jason Michaels to strike out looking.

Michaels was furious over the call and was quickly tossed by
plate umpire Dana DeMuth, who also ejected Phillies manager Larry
Bowa in the ninth when he came out to argue after a close call at
the plate.

"I was arguing more about Michaels' call, to be honest," said
Bowa, tossed for the 18th time as Phillies manager.

The Phillies offense continued to sputter, with six starters
hitting .250 or worse. Now Philadelphia goes on a 10-game road trip
at Arizona, San Francisco and Colorado.

"We're definitely going to have to score some runs," Bowa
said. "We have to swing the bats. I don't mean just home runs. We
have to generate some offense."

Philadelphia even had trouble with its gloves. The Phillies
entered as one of top fielding teams in the National League, but a
couple of miscues in the first cost them.

After an error by second baseman Placido Polanco, Wolf gave up
two straight singles. Scott Rolen got the second hit up the middle
when Polanco and shortstop Tomas Perez collided behind second base.

Edgar Renteria followed with bloop single to right to make it
2-0 and, after the second out, Luna hit the three-run shot to left.

It was Luna's third hit in 12 at-bats this year -- but second
homer. Luna, a Rule 5 draft pick from Cleveland in December, hit
only two home runs in 462 at-bats last year for Double-A Akron.

Wolf (2-2) gave up eight hits and six runs -- two earned -- in 6
2-3 innings. The Phillies (12-14), preseason favorites to win the
NL East, haven't been at .500 since they were 1-1.

"I think we're frustrated because we lost the series," Wolf
said. "We'll be OK. I guarantee you we'll get over .500."

After the first, Wolf didn't allow another hit until Tony
Womack's leadoff double in the fifth. Womack scored on Albert
Pujols' sacrifice fly, making it 6-4.

The Phillies scored three times in the first, including
consecutive solo homers by Jim Thome and Pat Burrell.

They had their chances against Suppan, loading the bases with
one out in the third. Perez grounded to short to score a run and
beat the relay throw to first. But Todd Pratt struck out to end the
rally.

Philadelphia reliever Ryan Madson pitched 1 1-3 scoreless
innings, and has started his career without allowing an earned run
in 19 innings.

Jim Edmonds' RBI groundout in the ninth made it 7-4.

Game notes
Thome has 390 career homers, tying him with Graig Nettles
for 41st place on the career list. ... The Phillies had a call
overturned in the second inning. Pratt had a low liner that RF
Reggie Sanders made a diving play on. 1B umpire Jim Joyce ruled
Pratt out and Bowa came out to argue. The umpires conferred and it
was decided Sanders did not make the catch. Replays clearly showed
it one-hopped into Sanders' mitt. La Russa made a brief argument.
... Sanders went 0-for-4 and is in an 0-for-22 slump with 11
strikeouts.