My sister used to have that same expression on her face when she was trying to bean me with a baseball, softball, football, or rock. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Cardinals Too Much For Diamondbacks, Win 5-2

Jamie Garcia, Atlanta's bats provide enough power to shut down the D-backs.

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Cardinals Too Much For D-backs, Win 5-2

Phoenix, AZ (Sports Network) - Brendan Ryan clubbed a three-run home run to help the St. Louis Cardinalstake a 5-2 win over the Arizona Diamondbacks in the first of a three-game set.

Skip Schumaker went 2-for-4 with an RBI and two runs scored while Yadier Molina was 2-for-3 with an RBI and a run scored for the Cardinals, who snapped a four-game skid. Jamie Garcia (6-2) threw five innings and was charged with just one run on four hits with five walks and four strikeouts.

Adam LaRoche drove in both runs for the Diamondbacks, who have dropped four of their last six. Rodrigo Lopez (2-5) dropped his third straight decision as he was banged up for five runs on six hits with four strikeouts over seven innings.

St. Louis grabbed the lead in the second inning. Matt Holliday led off with a double and came home two batters later on a double from Schumaker. Molina then singled home Schumaker for a 2-0 lead.

Arizona hit into double plays in the second and third innings and Lopez grounded out with the bases loaded in the fourth.

The Diamondbacks got on the board in the fifth. With one out, Conor Jackson doubled and, after a strikeout byJustin Upton and intentional walk to Mark Reynolds, LaRoche smacked a double to right to score Jackson.

After the Molina RBI single, Lopez retired the next 16 batter he faced, but the Cardinals padded their lead in the seventh. With two outs Schumaker and Molina singled and Ryan followed with a shot over the left field wall for a 5-1 lead.

Arizona got one back in the home seventh on an RBI single from LaRoche that plated Upton, who hit a one-out single and moved to third on Reynolds' single. Jason Motte, though, was able to limit the damage as he struck out Chris Young and Chris Snyder to end the frame.

The Diamondbacks put runners on first and second with one out in the eighth, but Ryan Franklin came on and got Jackson to fly out and Upton looking at strike three to end the frame.

Franklin stayed on for the ninth and loaded the bases, but it was with two outs and Carlos Rosa lined out to center to give Franklin his 11th save of the season.

Garcia has won his past three decisions...St. Louis has taken 10 of the last 13 against Arizona...Arizona stranded 16 runners as the team went just 2- for-14 with runners in scoring position...Lopez fell to 2-2 in five career starts against St. Louis.


Cardinals Slide Into Chase, D-backs Open Three Game Series, 6:40 p.m.

(Sports Network) - Lefty prodigy Jaime Garcia can get St. Louis back on track tonight when the Cardinals visit Arizona for a three-game set at Chase Field in the lone National League matchup of the weekend.

The Cardinals enter the series having lost four straight and trail the first- place Cincinnati Reds by 1 1/2 games in the NL Central.

They dropped a 4-3 decision at Los Angeles in their last game Wednesday, when Blake DeWitt's two-run single in the third inning proved to be the difference as the Dodgers completed a three-game series sweep.

Ryan Ludwick smacked a three-run homer for St. Louis, which hasn't lost five in a row since June 5-9 last season.

Adam Wainwright (8-4), coming off his first shutout, gave up four runs on eight hits in six frames to take the loss. He also struck out six and walked five.

Garcia, who'll turn 24 next month, has won five of seven decisions in 11 starts this season after he debuted with the team and made 10 appearances - one start - in 2009.

The former 22nd-round draft pick (2005) last got a victory on May 31 against Cincinnati, when he scattered seven hits and allowed two earned runs in six innings of a 12-4 triumph.

Garcia is unbeaten in five starts since a 2-0 loss at Pittsburgh on May 8.

He is 3-2 in six outings on the road while allowing 29 hits and seven earned runs in 36 1/3 innings.

He has never faced the Diamondbacks.

Arizona counters with veteran right-hander Rodrigo Lopez, who made his major- league debut with San Diego in 2000, the year Garcia turned 14.

Now 34, Lopez has won just 18 games over parts of four seasons since he notched a career-best 15 wins with the Baltimore Orioles in 2005.

He was 9-18 with the Orioles a season later, then won five games for Arizona in 2007 and three for Philadelphia last season before coming to the Diamondbacks in 2010.

Lopez's last win this season came May 15 at Atlanta, when he allowed a run on seven hits in eight innings of an 11-1 rout.

He's 0-2 with two no-decisions since, and got no verdict against the Cardinals on April 19 after surrendering seven hits and two runs in seven innings.

Lopez is 2-1 in four career starts against St. Louis.

On Thursday, pinch-hitter Brian McCann smacked a go-ahead RBI single in the Braves' four-run ninth inning, as Atlanta rallied past Arizona, 11-7, to earn a split in the four-game series.

The Diamondbacks scored twice in the seventh and got a three-run double from Kelly Johnson in the eighth to tie the game, but the Braves took advantage of opportunities against Chad Qualls (1-3) in the ninth to get the victory.

Johnson and Conor Jackson each had two hits for Arizona, which fell to 4-3 on its 10-game homestand.

St. Louis took two of three from the D-Backs earlier in the year after winning the series 4-2 a year ago.

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