Rants Daily: Molina & Freese power Cardinals past Brewers, 7-3

The St. Louis Cardinals used home runs from Yadier Molina and David Freese to help Kyle Lohse earn his fourth win of the season as they beat the Milwaukee Brewers 7-3.

Yadier Molina went 4-for-4 with a home run on Saturday leading the Cardinals to a 7-3 win over the Brewers. (Mandatory Credit: Scott Rovak-US PRESSWIRE)

Lohse ended up throwing sixth innings. He allowed three earned runs on six hits. He uncharacteristically walked four batters and two of the hits he allowed were home runs.

Lohse wasn’t nearly as good in this one as he was in his first four outings, but he didn’t need to be. The Cardinals scored two runs in the third and then one in the fourth on Freese’s homer.

In the sixth with the score tied at 3 after the Brewers tied up the game on an Alex Gonzalez home run, Molina came through with a homer of his own with Carlos Beltran on board to give the Redbirds a 5-3 lead.

Molina raised his average to .324 after going 4-for-4 with the home run, 2 runs and 2 RBIs. He was also honored before the game with his third gold glove award.

Jon Jay banged out three more hits (he’s 6-for-9 since returning on Friday), raising his average to .404. Skip Schumaker was at second base again and delivered two RBIs with a single.

The win brought the Cardinals record to 14-7 and they maintained a four game lead over the Cincinnati Reds. The Brewers are now five games back.

NOTEWORTHY
  • Freese now has 20 RBIs. He previous high for a month was 17.
  • Lohse also won four games in April 2011.
  • Molina leads the team with 8 multi-hit games.
  • The Cardinals are 11-2 in games when they score first.
TODAY’S GAME

Jaime Garcia takes the mound in the final game of the series. He is set to face Zack Greinke who won his previous start against the Cardinals in Milwaukee.

MY TWO CENTS

For what it’s worth, no matter what happens today the Cardinals have to be extremely happy with the way they opened this season.

There was plenty stacked against them; the schedule was downright brutal, they’ve lost Chris Carpenter for at least three months, they’ve been without, Lance Berkman, Schumaker and Allen Craig for different periods and they’ve received nothing from their second basemen (until recently at least). Neither Matt Holliday or Adam Wainwright has performed to their abilities. Plus, they did it all with a brand new manager and after losing a player once believed to be impossible to replace.

There is no doubt that this team is one to be reckoned with in the National League and has the potential to defend their World Championship title. The best part of it if you’re a Cardinals fan is that they can be better. If Carpenter returns it is like having a mid-season signing that they don’t have to pay for in any way. If he doesn’t Lance Lynn has been more than respectable in his spot.

Once Berkman and Craig return there is the chance for even more explosiveness from the lineup. At the least the power gets distributed through more players. Holliday will begin to hit more consistently and Wainwright will get stronger as the year progresses.

I’ll hold out hope that one of the three men playing second base will emerge as the regular and bring some consistency to the position. If none of the three is working out, general manager John Mozeliak can look to fill the void through a July trade.

Mike Matheny will continue to grow as a manager, and quite frankly it should make other teams nervous. Though he never managed a day in his life at the professional level, he hasn’t seemed inexperienced at all. So, if he can only get better then it follows that the Cardinals are in very good hands.

So, a win today seals a sweep and a fantastic first month. A loss shouldn’t force us to call it anything short of the same. The Cards have already accomplished two things this season, getting out to a great start and showing they are ready to defend their title.

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.

Topics: Adam Wainwright, Alex Gonzalez, Cardinals, Carlos Beltran, David Freese, Jaime Garcia, John Mozeliak, Jon Jay, Lance Berkman, Lance Lynn, Matt Holliday, Mike Matheny, Milwaukee Brewers, NL Central, Skip Schumaker, St Louis Cardinals, Yadier Molina, Zack Greinke

Want more from Redbird Rants?  
Subscribe to FanSided Daily for your morning fix. Enter your email and stay in the know.
  • http://yardsellr.com/yardsale/John-Weitzman-124454 johnwvideo

    A win today would be great, Greinke is tough though he is not at home like Jaimie is.. Should be fun to watch..
    As usual, your 2 cents worth is good to read.
     
     ”I’ll hold out hope that one of the three men playing second base will emerge as the regular and bring some consistency to the position”
    I have a feeling this is going to be a soar spot for awhile.. Skip may hit, but none are good at 2nd..
    Whats really funny is this is starting  to remind me of Abbott & Costello  ”whos on first”  ”whats on second”  and Abbott is wearing a St. Louis Wolfs jersey while the whole act takes place in St. Louie..
    How ironic..
     
    Its actually amazing they have done this well with out Berkman, Craig, Carpenter and Waino and even Holliday for the most part.. It would not surprise me if Carp is out most of the season.. The question is how long can Lynn Hold up.. There is no doubt he is far better then McClellan last season, even if Mac had a 6-0 at one point in May.. Lynn is getting the job done with out all of that run support..
    This 2012 team is playing as a team, one goes down another steps in.. One is in a slump another is playing great.. Over 162 games there depth is what is going to keep them on top, not to forget about pitching.. Speaking of pitching Boggs has been a real pleasant surprise, Looks like he is finally reaching the potent that Duncan saw..
     
    I like this team better with out Albert. Thats something i never thought I would be saying..

  • http://www.redbirdrants.com/ Chris_Carelli

     @johnwvideo
    Thanks for the compliment John and as always your comments are insightful. I like hearing from such a passionate fan.
     
    Plus, Greinke pitches better in Milwaukee…
     
    Abbott and Costello, wow a blast from the past. Used to watch them every Saturday with my father. Love them. Good comparison.
     
    The rotation has been incredible and yes the depth is excellent on this team and only gets better once Berkman and Craig are back.

  • http://yardsellr.com/yardsale/John-Weitzman-124454 johnwvideo

     @Chris_Carelli Chris, I have been going to games since I can remember, I still have slight memories of Stan in 1963, but my memories are of him striking out.. 
    Ever since I moved to NY back in 79, I still hit at least 10 Cardinal games a year. Well not back in 79 but now that my son goes with me, I have NY, Phillie and DC every year to count on games and usually one trip to St. Louis,..          It gets expensive but its worth it and I get to have the father son experience, like going in for game 6 of the WS last year..  Thats one for the memories, like a MasterCard commercial.. Its priceless.. And now with MLB TV , I watch at least 140 games, I will have the Cards on my lap top and the Yankees on TV. This is what happens with to much time on your hands.. This year the Cards are in town for 4 games, I have to be careful at times if I am not in a Cardinal section.. I usually shoot for field level 1st base and at times am the only cardinal fan over there.. But I love my Cardinals win or loose !!
     
    Reading the Rants is a total different experience then reading the highlights or garbage the PD puts out.. I love Rains as well, though as of late he is not keeping up.. Lets see if Jaimie can out-dual Greinke

TEAMFeed More Cardinals news from the Fansided Network

Hot on the Web From golf.com