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News » Byrnes' single in 10th lifts D'backs over Cards

Byrnes' single in 10th lifts D'backs over Cards

Byrnes' single in 10th lifts D'backs over Cards
PHOENIX (AP) - After blowing a late lead, the Arizona Diamondbacks needed a big hit.

They got it from Eric Byrnes, whose 1-for-17 slump had brought boos from the Chase Field faithful.

Byrnes turned the jeers to cheers by lining a two-out RBI single to give the Diamondbacks a 7-6 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals in 10 innings on Tuesday night.

The hit to left field came on the first delivery from Brad Thompson (0-1) and scored Justin Upton from third base. Upton had snapped out of an 0-for-15 slide with a single - and he was only one of the slumping hitters on a team that entered with a .225 batting average, 14th in the NL.

"Both those guys, they're in the game, regardless," said Arizona manager Bob Melvin, who had run out of position players in the ninth. "And they're just going to have to grind through it. They know they're in there, and they ended up coming up with the two biggest hits. So hopefully that's good for both of them going forward."

After being mobbed by his teammates, the usually talkative Byrnes left without speaking to reporters.

The defeat was especially painful for the Cardinals, who lost starting pitcher Chris Carpenter to a ribcage injury. Carpenter, who has not allowed a run in 10 innings, was removed in the fourth inning after straining his left ribcage swinging the bat.

The Cardinals led 3-0 at the time, and Carpenter had stranded runners at second base in each of the first three innings.

"The most important thing is that Chris Carpenter got hurt," St. Louis manager Tony La Russa said. "A 3-0 lead with him pitching, no matter what happens in the game, the most important thing is it looks like he's going to be out for a while. That kind of overwhelms everything else that happened in that game."

Carpenter, the 2005 NL Cy Young Award winner, allowed four hits in three innings, striking out two.

The 33-year-old right-hander made only four appearances last season after reconstructive elbow surgery. He underwent another procedure in November to transpose an elbow nerve that was irritating the muscles in the back of his shoulder and around his neck.

Now it appears Carpenter is headed for the disabled list again.

"I'm not happy," La Russa said. "I ain't going to fake it."

The feeling was different in Arizona's clubhouse. The Diamondbacks had stumbled to a 2-5 start, their worst since 2004, when they opened 2-6 on their way to a club-record 111 losses.

They appeared headed for another defeat until the eighth, when pinch-hitter Conor Jackson hit a go-ahead, three-run homer. But St. Louis tied it in the ninth on singles by Colby Rasmus and Albert Pujols off closer Chad Qualls, who blew his first save in two chances.

"It was a nice win for our confidence," Jackson said. "Hopefully we can carry it into tomorrow. But one game in April is not going to define us as a team."

Arizona also got a pinch-hit homer from Mark Reynolds in the fifth.

Tony Pena (2-0) pitched the 10th to earn the victory and end a five-game win streak for the Cardinals.

"Hopefully that relieves a bit of the pressure offensively for us," Melvin said.

Marlins 5, Braves 1

At Atlanta, Dan Uggla drove in three runs, and Chris Volstad and two relievers combined on a four-hitter for Florida.

The Marlins are a major league-best 6-1 - all against NL East opponents - for their best start since opening 8-1 in 1997, when they won the first of their two World Series titles.

Volstad (2-0) gave up three hits and one run in seven innings. He struck out four and walked two while lowering his ERA to 1.50. He has allowed only five hits in 12 innings.

Uggla drove in two runs with a third-inning single off Javier Vazquez (0-1), who struck out 12 in six innings.

Kelly Johnson led off the fourth with his third homer for Atlanta's first hit off Volstad. Leo Nunez and Matt Lindstrom each pitched a scoreless inning in relief of Volstad.

Reds 6, Brewers 1

At Milwaukee, Bronson Arroyo allowed four hits in six-plus innings for Cincinnati.

Arroyo (2-0) was bothered by a flare-up of carpal tunnel syndrome during spring training and didn't look particularly sharp in winning his first outing of the season. But this time he gave up his only run on a homer by J.J. Hardy.

Jerry Hairston Jr. hit a two-run shot for the Reds, who took the first two games of the series and will go for a sweep Wednesday.

Hardy's second homer of the season was about the only highlight for the Brewers, who have lost four straight and six of eight to start the season. Milwaukee got a decent performance from starter Manny Parra (0-2), who gave up three runs in six innings.

Author:Fox Sports
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Added: April 15, 2009

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