Cardinals club Bailey, claim another set vs. Reds

Cardinals club Bailey, claim another set vs. Reds

ST. LOUIS -- The Cardinals continued their recent dominance of the Reds on Saturday, this time spoiling Homer Bailey's season debut with a steady offensive attack that lifted them to a 5-2 win in front of a sellout Busch Stadium crowd. The victory assures the Cardinals of also claiming a series win, making this the 14th straight three-game series between these two clubs that has gone St. Louis' way.

Bailey, whose start to the season was delayed as he finished his recovery from torn flexor mass tendon surgery, likely would have preferred to draw another opponent in his first appearance since Aug. 7, 2014. Saturday's loss was his 11th against the Cardinals, who have scored at least four runs off him 11 times. This time, he was charged with five. More >

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, and follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Heyward gets first Cardinals curtain call

Heyward gets first Cardinals curtain call

ST. LOUIS -- During Monday's home opener, a sellout crowd at Busch Stadium welcomed Jason Heyward to town with a standing ovation as he stepped to the plate for his first at-bat. Afterward, however, Heyward admitted to being oblivious to the recognition, noting he was too focused on his at-bat to take in the scene.

On Saturday, the Cardinals ensured he didn't miss his moment again.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Holliday exits early, but move 'completely precautionary'

Cards expect outfielder to return Sunday after feeling back tighten up in first inning

Holliday exits early, but move 'completely precautionary'

ST. LOUIS -- Following the Cardinals' 5-2 win over the Reds on Saturday, manager Mike Matheny said he expects Matt Holliday, who exited the game after one inning due to mid-back tightness, to return to the lineup for Sunday night's series finale.

Holliday was pulled moments after doubling and scoring to give the Cardinals an early lead. He had extended the first inning with a two-out double off Reds starter Homer Bailey, against whom he is now 14-for-43 in his career. The outfielder then hustled home to score on Matt Adams' single to right and was seen clutching his side as he returned to the dugout.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Squat sends Grichuk to DL with lower-back strain

Cardinals outfielder suffered similar injury while weight lifting during Spring Training

Squat sends Grichuk to DL with lower-back strain

ST. LOUIS -- A lower-back strain similar to the one he suffered in Spring Training is sending Randal Grichuk to the 15-day disabled list just weeks after he made an Opening Day roster for the first time in his Major League career.

Manager Mike Matheny announced the roster move following Saturday's 5-2 win after being asked why Peter Bourjos, not Grichuk, entered as an injury-replacement for Matt Holliday in the second inning. As it turns out, Grichuk has been unavailable since Friday afternoon, which is when he suffered the injury while doing a weight-lifting squat.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Relying less on heat, Martinez cooling off hitters

Relying less on heat, Martinez cooling off hitters

ST. LOUIS -- Knowing that efficiency and effectiveness will determine whether he sticks as a member of the Cardinals' rotation, Carlos Martinez is taking a little bit off to get a little bit more.

While his ability to rely heavily on a power fastball worked fine in a relief role, Martinez is showing himself a more complete pitcher as he proves the Cardinals correct for carving out a starting spot for him. In two starts, both against Cincinnati, Martinez has shown no hesitancy in throwing his changeup or slider in big spots, like he did in Saturday's 5-2 win. And when he does go back to the fastball, he's prioritizing command over mphs.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Waino, Cards aim to extend dominance over Reds

Waino, Cards aim to extend dominance over Reds

The Cardinals and Reds will close out their three-game series with an edition of Sunday Night Baseball at Busch Stadium. Ace Adam Wainwright will start for St. Louis against Cincinnati's Mike Leake. Wainwright has pitched 17 straight scoreless innings vs. the Reds dating back to 2013, including 15 scoreless innings over his two starts last season.

Things to know about this game:

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Mark Sheldon is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Mark My Word, and follow him on Twitter @m_sheldon. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Matheny seeks clarification on play at the plate

Although Carpenter scored Friday with leap, catcher Pena didn't appear to leave him with path

Matheny seeks clarification on play at the plate

ST. LOUIS -- Though Matt Carpenter's aerial ascent made Brayan Pena's block of home plate a non-issue in Friday's 6-1 Cardinals win, manager Mike Matheny said he does intend to submit the play to Major League Baseball to see how it would have been called within the parameters of Rule 7.13.

As Carpenter sought to score from third on a flyout, Pena moved up the third-base line to receive a throw from Reds center fielder Billy Hamilton. But instead of coming forward to leave a path for Carpenter, Pena remained straddled over the baseline. That gave Carpenter two options -- run through Pena or hurdle him. Carpenter, instinctively, opted for the somersault score and executed it perfectly.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Carpenter back in MVP-caliber form

Carpenter back in MVP-caliber form

ST. LOUIS -- For those who thought it unlikely that Matt Carpenter would ever match his 2013 offensive numbers, the third baseman had a bold statement to offer following the club's 6-1 victory over the Reds on Friday.

"I feel as close to if not better than I felt in 2013," Carpenter asserted. "Everything is kind of clicking right now."

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Yadi's clutch double vs. Cueto sinks Reds

Yadi's clutch double vs. Cueto sinks Reds

ST. LOUIS -- Yadier Molina's three-run double off Reds ace Johnny Cueto in the seventh inning broke open a tie game and sent the Cardinals on their way to a 6-1 victory in Friday night's series opener at Busch Stadium.

Both Cueto and Cardinals starting pitcher Michael Wacha allowed first-inning runs, and the score remained 1-1 until the seventh. Wacha stranded a runner at third to close the top half of that frame, but Cueto couldn't match the damage control. Following his leadoff single, Matt Holliday moved to third when Jhonny Peralta bounced a hit over the glove of Reds left fielder Marlon Byrd.

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Jenifer Langosch and Mark Sheldon are reporters for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Wacha changes up approach to keep Reds off balance

Wacha changes up approach to keep Reds off balance

ST. LOUIS -- Though the final line (a quality start with five hits and one run allowed in seven innings) matched the one he posted in a start against the Reds a week ago, Cardinals right-hander Michael Wacha went with a different look against the same opponent in Friday's 6-1 win.

Perhaps that was why he could match the success despite the Reds' familiarity with his repertoire.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cards honor Red's legacy

Cards honor Red's legacy

ST. LOUIS -- Seventy years before Kris Bryant made his much-anticipated debut at Wrigley Field, the ballpark on Chicago's north side served as the setting for the debut of a future Hall of Famer.

Batting fourth for the visiting Cardinals, Red Schoendienst went 1-for-4 with a triple in a loss to the Cubs that day. What he remembers, though, was the error he committed in left field, just as he had committed an error in his first professional game for Class D Albany (Ga.) some three years earlier. Sitting in a Union City, Tenn., clubhouse after that debut, Schoendienst was approached by then-Cardinals executive Branch Rickey.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Garcia at least 6 weeks from rejoining Cardinals

Garcia at least 6 weeks from rejoining Cardinals

ST. LOUIS -- Though lefty Jaime Garcia took another small step forward on Friday by facing hitters for the first time since March 24, the Cardinals don't expect him to factor into their Major League plans for at least six more weeks.

That projection came from general manager John Mozeliak, who likened Garcia's live batting-practice session on Friday to the one pitchers throw the second week of Spring Training. Garcia, who is battling left shoulder inflammation, will keep building up from there, throwing another live BP session on Monday and then either throwing an additional one midweek or appearing in an extended spring training game.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Carpenter channels Willie Mays Hayes with acrobatic run

Carpenter channels Willie Mays Hayes with acrobatic run

ST. LOUIS -- Trying to score from third base on Matt Holliday's first-inning fly ball to Reds center fielder Billy Hamilton on Friday, Matt Carpenter used some split-second improvisation by somersaulting over catcher Brayan Pena, a la Wesley Snipes' Willie Mays Hayes from the movie "Major League."

And it actually worked.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Deceptive slider key to Lackey's domination

Right-hander strikes out 8 Brewers, all swinging

Deceptive slider key to Lackey's domination

ST. LOUIS -- Pitching out of a rotation that has claim to the National League's lowest ERA through the first 12 days of the season, John Lackey can boast of delivering the most dominant performance by a Cardinals starter to date in Thursday's 4-0 victory over the Brewers at Busch Stadium.

He became the club's first pitcher to finish seven innings, and did it on a day in which manager Mike Matheny desperately wanted to find rest for a weary 'pen. Lackey, en route to earning his first win of the season, struck out eight (all swinging) and did not allow the Brewers to advance a runner to third. He held down the Brewers mainly behind a slider-fastball mix.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Lackey goes 7 in Cardinals' shutout of Brewers

Lackey goes 7 in Cardinals' shutout of Brewers

ST. LOUIS -- After five innings of watching starters Mike Fiers and John Lackey trade zeros on the scoreboard, the Cardinals, buoyed once again by Matt Carpenter and Matt Holliday, broke out with enough late offense to steal a 4-0 win and series victory over the Brewers on Thursday afternoon at Busch Stadium.

Carpenter contributed a pair of doubles (his third and fourth of the season), both of which highlighted run-scoring innings. His leadoff double off of Fiers in the sixth put him in position to score on Holliday's one-out single to center. An RBI double from former Brewer Mark Reynolds, making his second start of the season, padded the lead later in the inning. More >

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. Adam McCalvy is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @AdamMcCalvy. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Timing is right for Yadi to get hot

Slow offensive start muted by recent stretch

Timing is right for Yadi to get hot

ST. LOUIS -- Yadier Molina's 0-for-10 season start seemed like old news by the time the Cardinals sealed a 4-0 win over the Brewers on Thursday. With another two hits in the victory, Molina recorded his third multi-hit performance in five games and perhaps muffled some of the outside curiosity about whether his winter weight loss could result in decreased offensive proficiency.

Molina, 8-for-19 since Saturday, has been in the middle of at least one run-scoring inning in four of the last five games. His RBI single off of Brewers reliever Tyler Thornburg in the eighth on Thursday tacked on the Cardinals' final run and allowed manager Mike Matheny to hold closer Trevor Rosenthal out of the game.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Reynolds responds with 2 hits in rare start

Knocks in first RBI in opportunity vs. righty

Reynolds responds with 2 hits in rare start

ST. LOUIS -- A flurry of early off-days and the absence of any opposing left-handed starters since Opening Day has left manager Mike Matheny little obvious opportunity to get his right-handed-hitting bench players involved. And so Matheny forced the issue on Thursday, opting to plug Mark Reynolds into the starting lineup for just the second time this season.

Reynolds responded with a multi-hit game that featured a key RBI -- his first as a Cardinal -- in St. Louis' 4-0 win over Milwaukee.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cards honor trailblazing scout on Jackie Robinson Day

Cards honor trailblazing scout on Jackie Robinson Day

ST. LOUIS -- For the seventh straight season on Wednesday, all players and uniformed personnel donned No. 42 as part of Major League Baseball's Jackie Robinson Day celebration.

Cardinals players found their No. 42 jerseys hanging at their lockers upon arriving to Busch Stadium for the second game of a three-game series against the Brewers. In addition to having everyone on the field wear the same number, the bases for Wednesday's game were marked for the occasion.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Lynn reaches 50 wins in 99th start

Lynn reaches 50 wins in 99th start

ST. LOUIS -- Having previously become just the seventh Cardinals pitcher to win 40 games before making his 100th career appearance, Lance Lynn added the 50-win milestone to his resume on Wednesday night, in his 99th start.

Lynn downplayed the significance -- "It means I play for a pretty good team," he said after the Cardinals' 4-2 win over the Brewers.-- but it has been a quick ascent to No. 50 for a pitcher who didn't join the rotation full-time until 2012. Since then, his 49 wins are the fourth-most in the Majors.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Matheny concerned with bullpen's early-season workload

Matheny concerned with bullpen's early-season workload

ST. LOUIS -- As manager Mike Matheny made his congratulatory postgame rounds following the Cardinals' 4-2 win over the Brewers on Wednesday night, he intentionally gravitated toward the relief corps. On a night when Lance Lynn notched a milestone victory and the offense showcased its depth, Matheny had a message for the mostly unsung bunch out of the bullpen.

Their contributions, though appreciated, can't continue at this pace.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cardinals edge Brewers for first home victory

Cardinals edge Brewers for first home victory

ST. LOUIS -- Behind two RBIs from Matt Holliday and three hits from Yadier Molina, the Cardinals displayed a steady attack against Brewers starter Wily Peralta to even the three-game series with a 4-2 victory on Wednesday night. It was St. Louis' first win of the season at Busch Stadium.

Peralta, who gave up eight earned runs in five starts against the Cards last season, allowed half that many over the first four frames of this five-inning effort. He found himself in a two-run hole six pitches into his night after the Cardinals opened with three straight hits.

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Jenifer Langosch and Adam McCalvy are reporters for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB.com Columnist

Bernie Pleskoff

Pleskoff: Gonzales a potential weapon for Cards

Pleskoff: Gonzales a potential weapon for Cards

People have come to expect tremendous pitching depth from the St. Louis Cardinals. Left-hander Marco Gonzales is another in the long line of pitchers the club has developed.

Gonzales attended Rocky Mountain High School in Fort Collins, Col. He earned All-Colorado honors in his sophomore, junior and senior seasons. In his senior year, he went 11-0 with a 2.20 ERA and 87 strikeouts in 54 innings. He hit .486 as well.

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Bernie Pleskoff has served as a professional scout for the Houston Astros and Seattle Mariners. Follow @BerniePleskoff on Twitter. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Inbox: Garcia still in Cardinals' plans for 2015?

Beat reporter Jenifer Langosch answers questions from St. Louis fans

Inbox: Garcia still in Cardinals' plans for 2015?

ST. LOUIS -- With the season now a little more than a week old, it's time to resurrect the Inbox, which will again be a regular cardinals.com feature this season. Submit questions through the link below, and keep in mind that I will also periodically answer fan questions on MLB Network's MLB Now program. Only questions submitted along with your name and hometown will be considered.

What is Jaime Garcia up to in his rehab?
-- Justin H., Little Rock, Ark.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

'Visionary' Carlton a candidate for Cards' Hall of Fame

'Visionary' Carlton a candidate for Cards' Hall of Fame

This is the eighth in a series of stories profiling the eight modern candidates on the Cardinals' 2015 Hall of Fame ballot.

There are few who know Steve Carlton better than Tim McCarver. Of the 741 times Carlton took the mound in a Major League game, McCarver was behind the plate for 236 of them -- nearly 100 more than any other player who caught the Hall of Fame hurler.

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Chad Thornburg is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Defensive execution lacking in Cards' home debut

Wong commits 2 errors; Wainwright opens door with uneven outing

Defensive execution lacking in Cards' home debut

ST. LOUIS -- A year after playing 55 one-run games, the Cardinals have opened the 2015 once again allowing themselves little room for error. It even led manager Mike Matheny's wife to recently caution her husband that she wasn't sure she could go through a season with so many close games again.

"That wasn't encouraging news," quipped Matheny, who has seen his team's first six games determined by a total of 12 runs.

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Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

MLB head of youth sports Reagins discusses game's future

MLB head of youth sports Reagins discusses game's future

LOS ANGELES -- Tony Reagins has spent decades in the game of baseball, and he's worked in everything from marketing to baseball operations. Reagins, formerly the general manager of the Angels, has taken on a new assignment with Major League Baseball as the senior vice president of youth programs, and he took some time Tuesday to discuss his plans for the future.

Reagins, under new Commissioner Rob Manfred, will be in charge of consolidating the league's relationships with youth, high school and college baseball organizations around the country. Reagins attended the Civil Rights Game instructional clinic Tuesday at Rancho Cienega Recreation Center, and he spoke a bit about Jackie Robinson, the Urban Youth Academies and the future of the game.

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Spencer Fordin is a reporter for MLB.com This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.