Apr 10, 2012; Cincinnati, OH, USA; St. Louis Cardinals right fielder Carlos Beltran (3) rounds third and is congratulated by third base coach Jose Oquendo (11) after hitting a home run during the first inning against the Cincinnati Reds at Great American Ballpark. Mandatory Credit: Frank Victores-US PRESSWIRE

Rants Daily: Cardinals grab early lead again, beat Reds 3-1

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Coming off a no-hit bid that lasted into the seventh inning on Opening Night, Kyle Lohse was on the mound for the Cardinals in the middle game of the three-game series with the Cincinnati Reds. He didn’t last so long in the no-hit department as Joey Votto, the third batter in the game, did him in. But he pitched another fine game allowing one run in six innings as the Cardinals beat the Reds 3-1.

Lohse, like many of the starters before him received a boost from the offense early. Carlos Beltran, hitting second, homered in the first to put the Redbirds up 1-0. The score remained 1-0 until the top of the sixth when Lance Berkman tripled with one out. David Freese was up next and hit a two-run jack to put the Cards up 3-0. The home runs from Beltran and Freese put each at three for the young season. Freese now has 10 RBI in six games.

The Reds scored their only run in the bottom half of the sixth. Zack Cozart tripled off Lohse and scored on a sacrifice fly from Votto. Mitchell Boggs threw two scoreless innings and Jason Motte recorded his second save of the season for the Cardinals who move to 5-1. Lohse is now 2-0.

CARPENTER SET FOR NEW TESTS

According to Derrick Goold of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Chris Carpenter is set to have a new round of tests in order to determine how far along he has come in his recovery. He still feels the pain in the shoulder, but it is not as severe as it was a couple weeks ago. He will also have tests done on the nerves to figure out if he can begin a throwing program soon.

TODAY’S GAME

Jaime Garcia will make his second start of the season in an late morning/afternoon tilt in the final game of the three-game series. He is set to face off against Reds’ Opening Day starter Johnny Cueto.

 

NOTEWORTHY
  • The World Series Ring Ceremony is ready to roll for Friday’s opener; festivities start at 2:15 PM CT.
  • Tyler Greene got the start at shortstop in yesterday’s game, giving Rafael Furcal a rest.
  • Lance Berkman is day-to-day with a “tender” calf according to a tweet for P-D reporter Joe Strauss
MY TWO CENTS

For what it’s worth, the Cardinals are clicking on all cylinders. It seems that day in and day out they are jumping out to an early lead with the long ball as the weapon of choice. It must be a good feeling to be a starting pitcher and walk out the mound with the lead. The Cardinals’ starters have felt this luxury four times out of six games thus far this season.

The starters to their credit have answered the call in all of them. Lohse has been the benefactor twice so far this season. While the offense is making noise on an almost nightly basis, the starters have turned in some good numbers themselves. The Cardinals have three starters with ERAs under 1.50. Through two starts Lohse has a .136 BAA and a 0.56 WHIP.

The bullpen is beginning to round into form as well. Boggs and Motte both looked excellent last night. Boggs in fact looked better than he has at any point so far this year.

It may be early on in the season, but these games count and the Cardinals are making the most of them.

You can ‘Like’ Redbird Rants on Facebook here. You can follow Redbird Rants on Twitter at @FSRedbirdRants and Chris Carelli on Twitter at @Chris_Carelli.

 

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Tags: Cardinals Carlos Beltran Chris Carpenter David Freese Jaime Garcia Jason Motte Joey Votto Jon Jay Kyle Lohse Lance Berkman Matt Holliday Mitchell Boggs Rafael Furcal St Louis Cardinals Tyler Greene Zack Cozart

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