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Cardinals cruise to Game 1 victory over Pirates in NLDS

Oct 3, 2013, 8:06 PM EDT

Adam Wainwright Getty Getty Images

Adam Wainwright lived up to his billing as an ace while A.J. Burnett imploded as the Cardinals cruised to a 9-1 blowout win over the Pirates in Game 1 of the NLDS on Thursday at Busch Stadium.

This game got out of hand rather quickly, as Burnett gave up seven runs in the third inning without recording an out before getting the hook. The big blow was a three-run homer from Carlos Beltran which traveled an estimated 443 feet. Burnett walked four batters and threw just 38 out of 72 pitches for strikes during the brief outing. Perhaps there was something to his previous struggles in the postseason and Busch Stadium after all.

Wainwright was brilliant, holding the Pirates to just three hits while striking out nine batters and walking none. He retired the first 11 batters he faced and had Pittsburgh’s hitters guessing with his curveball. His only mistake was a solo homer by Pedro Alvarez in the fifth inning. Wainwright probably could have thrown another inning or two if needed, but there was little reason to push it with such a big lead.

The Pirates were dominated in all phases of the game today, but they’ll have a chance to change the conversation quickly with Game 2 scheduled for 1 p.m. ET tomorrow. Pittsburgh will send rookie Gerrit Cole to the hill while Lance Lynn will start for St. Louis.

  1. happytwinsfan - Oct 3, 2013 at 8:14 PM

    don’t the cards know that by being the most intelligently run franchise of the nl since about stan musial, they are now the evil overlords of privilege and oppression destined to fall to the divinely blessed buccos?

    • jimeejohnson - Oct 3, 2013 at 8:21 PM


    • ashlynkat - Oct 3, 2013 at 9:29 PM

      The Cardinal hate is a bit odd. Unlike the Yankees who treat the rest of the league as their own personal farm system, the Cardinals seem to win by doing things “the right way” through smart management and developing home grown talent.

      Unlike teams like the Marlins, they sustain their success by reinvesting in their club rather than giving their fanbase the finger and having a fire sale everytime they capture lightening in a bottle.

      The success of a mid-market franchise like the Cardinals should be applauded because it gives hope to every mid-market team that they don’t have to spend like the Yankees or bet the house on one great year like the Marlins. The Cards show that parity can exist in MLB and the gap between the haves and have nots isn’t that great.

      • happytwinsfan - Oct 3, 2013 at 10:53 PM

        you read me backwards. this is respect for the most intelligently run franchise in the nl since stan musial combined with empathy for the long suffering fans of steel town. nothing more than enjoying OCTOBER BASEBALL.

      • ashlynkat - Oct 4, 2013 at 1:04 AM

        My apologies. I didn’t make clear in my comment that I wasn’t necessarily replying to you but rather to the type of “Cardinal hate” that your comment was essentially mocking. I got your sarcasm (and gave it a thumbs up) and my comment was just more of a general one in reply to that.

        But yes, here’s to enjoying October Baseball! :)

      • cktai - Oct 4, 2013 at 3:05 AM

        There is nothing wrong with the cardinals. Their fans however…

  2. spacemaker101 - Oct 3, 2013 at 8:20 PM

    Leggo braves

    • happytwinsfan - Oct 3, 2013 at 8:23 PM

      just wondering. still doing the tomahawk chop. love it.

  3. steelers88 - Oct 3, 2013 at 8:23 PM

    Tomorrow is a KEY game. If the Pirates can find a way to win tomorrow I like their chances going back to Pittsburgh. Anyway I don’t think the Pirates will roll over. This pirates team is very resilient. I still think this will be a dogfight.

  4. Stiller43 - Oct 3, 2013 at 8:24 PM

    I waa hoping they’d start cole…a lot less pressure in game 1 than game 2 down 1-0 in a first to 3 series.

    Oh well it is what it is. Gotta hope the rook continues what he’s been doing recently

  5. steelers88 - Oct 3, 2013 at 8:29 PM

    It seems like Cole pitches his best during the biggest games. For example: The game in Texas.

  6. junglerat524 - Oct 3, 2013 at 8:30 PM

    Well that was a huge letdown. They looked like the Reds last week.

  7. steelers88 - Oct 3, 2013 at 8:35 PM

    I think the Pirates will come out tomorrow and play a much better game. They have done it every time this year after a bad game. They won 95 games this year(including wildcard game). We have to have faith in these players.

  8. paperlions - Oct 3, 2013 at 8:36 PM

    Beltran hitting a post-season HR that drives in Wainwright is pretty cool….and only 7 years after Wainwright struck him out to end the season.

    The Cardinals are lucky to only have to face Liriano and Cole once each this series…assuming rain outs are not an issue.

  9. steelers88 - Oct 3, 2013 at 8:45 PM

    I feel like everyone who is a Pirates fan is panicking. Everyone needs to calm down relax and take deep breaths.

  10. steelers88 - Oct 3, 2013 at 8:52 PM

    If Pirates lose tomorrow I still think the series will go 5. I think Pirates will take the 2 games at PNC.

    • cheesesteak75 - Oct 4, 2013 at 6:15 AM

      Five minutes? The Pirates put up 1 run and you think it is going to go to five games. I guess the Steelers are going to win their division too.

  11. perryt200 - Oct 3, 2013 at 9:05 PM

    I guess I am kinda sorry that for many St Louis has somehow become the evil empire.

    I barely understand it myself. If i thought the Yankess were the evil empire, it would be solely on payroll. Spending about double the Cards seems a bit extreme and simply trying to buy the title slightly unsportsmanlike.

    And StL doesn’t seem to have any wife beaters, PED users, gamblers, loud mouths, insane twitter users, or all the other stuff that makes the news.

    So I am sorry StL has a great farm system, sorry they draft great, sorry they know how to spend their money great, sorry they tied for the best record in baseball, sorry that Molina should be MVP, that Matheny should be in the running for manager of the year, that they drew about 3.3 million people to the stadium this year, that the RISP hit record got blown out of the water and sorry that if you google best fans in baseball you will see old articles like this.

    from over a year ago. from the Denver Post.

    or this also from over a year ago

    but i am not sorry that they play hard in post season. The Pirates did great this year. They lead the NL Central for 56 days. They made the playoffs. They won the wildcard playoff game.

    but Olbermann said it right in the pregame. Molina has almost as many post season games as the entire Pirates roster.

    The Pirates just can’t beat that.

  12. junglerat524 - Oct 3, 2013 at 9:11 PM

    It’s over.

  13. ashlynkat - Oct 3, 2013 at 9:23 PM

    It’s not over but Game 2 will be key. The Pirates have a very young squad and how they bounce back from such a resounding defeat will make or break them this series.

    If they go out and look just as shell shocked as they did today then the odds will be good that this series will be a short one.

  14. steelers88 - Oct 3, 2013 at 9:30 PM

    They have bounced back from bad losses all season long. It will be interesting to see if they bounce back tomorrow. You are right tomorrow is a HUGE game.

  15. garythebat - Oct 3, 2013 at 9:42 PM

    Go Cradz.

  16. hustleandflomax - Oct 4, 2013 at 7:43 AM

    Lol, love the comments about how young Pittsburgh is…as if the Cards are all a bunch of graybeards. The Cardinals have gotten as far as they have on the shoulders of many rookies. This is not Tony La Russa’s Cardinals, folks.

    • stlouis1baseball - Oct 4, 2013 at 11:58 AM

      You nailed it flowmax. The Cardinals are the 3rd youngest team in the postseason. With the two youngest teams being only a fraction younger.

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