Albert Pujols hit the 701st homerun of his career as the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Pittsburgh Pirates by a 2-1 score at Busch Stadium on Friday night.
This is the final regular season series of Albert’s career, and the 27th sellout crowd of the season witnessed a low scoring game, ending with a Cardinals’ victory. St. Louis improved to 11-3 against the Pirates in 2022.
Johan Oviedo started for Pittsburgh and was solid once again. He lasted six innings, giving up two runs on six hits with four strikeouts and two walks. He was tagged with the loss, falling to 4-3 on the season. Duane Underwood Jr. and Yohan Ramirez each pitched a scoreless inning in relief for Pittsburgh in the losing effort.
Jack Flaherty started for the Cardinals, giving up one run on four hits with two walks and six strikeouts in six innings. Ryan Helsley earned his 19th save of the season by pitching a scoreless ninth inning.
The Pirates scored the game’s first run in the fourth inning. A single by Ji Hwan Bae scored Ben Gamel, making it a 1-0 game. Unfortunately for Pittsburgh, it would be the only run they would score on the night.
In the bottom of the fourth, Pujols stepped to the plate and tied the game with one swing of the bat. His 22nd second homerun of the season was smacked to left field, making it a 1-1 game, much to the delight of the sellout crowd.
Nolan Arenado’s RBI single in the fifth scored Brendan Donovan. It turned out to be the game-winner, as neither team was able to push another run across the plate in the final four innings.
This was yet another frustrating loss for Pittsburgh. They played St. Louis hard on Friday, and they just came up short in a low scoring game against the division champions. With only five games left in the season, the Bucs will look to even this weekend’s series when they take the field on Saturday. Luis Ortiz will be on the mound for Pittsburgh against Jordan Montgomery for the Cardinals.
Record vs. Cardinals: 3-11
Record vs. N.L. Central: 32-39
Record on the Road: 27-52
Overall Record: 59-98
Let’s Go Bucs!