Apr. 1, 2013; Phoenix, AZ, USA: St. Louis Cardinals infielder Pete Kozma throws to first base after forcing out Arizona Diamondbacks base runner Paul Goldschmidt in the seventh inning during opening day at Chase Field. Image Credit: Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports

Koz, the Great and Powerful

Pete Kozma, the Cardinal short stop, has proven to be a late bloomer. Koz the Great went 2 for 4 in the second game of the season. In the 7th inning, he mashed his first home run of the 2013 season off of Arizona Diamondbacks reliever Heath Bell.

Two batters later, Jon Jay would hit a two-run home run. Jay scored two runs last night.

Matt Carpenter went 2 for 5 on the night, hitting his second and third double of the season. Craig would score from second in the top of the fourth inning.

The sixth inning saw Matt Holliday hit his first home run of the season and knocked in Jay in the process.

What was impressive is that the three home runs would turn into five runs overall on the night. During Spring Training, the Cardinals showed what their power can be. They just needed the second day of the season for the bats to wake up.

Jaime Garcia, known to be a better pitcher at home than on the road, pitched a gem of a game. Garcia went nearly 6 innings allowing 2 hits, including a home run off the bat of Miguel Montero. Garcia walked 4 but also struck out 4 batters as well.

Last season, in nine starts at home, Garcia was 4-2 with a 2.82 ERA. On the road, Garcia was 3-5 with a 5.02 ERA in 11 starts.

Carlos Beltran was double switched out of the game on Tuesday and wasn’t playing tonight. Matt Adams got the start at first base while Allen Craig took to right field tonight. Throw in an off day on Thursday and Beltran will have nearly 3 complete days of rest before the Cardinals resume on Friday against the Giants.

Garcia was followed by the relievers of Edward Mujica, Trevor Rosenthal, and temporary closer Mitchell Boggs. Rosenthal was as impressive as he was in his 2012 debut season. He pitched a perfect inning of relief and struck out two batters along the way.

Tags: St Louis Cardinals

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