Albert Pujols’ pinch-hit grand slam backs fellow 40-something Adam Wainwright’s gem for St. Louis Cardinals

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ST. LOUIS — Albert Pujols launched a pinch-hit grand slam and drove in five runs, Adam Wainwright threw seven sharp innings and the St. Louis Cardinals defeated the Colorado Rockies 13-0 on Thursday for a three-game sweep.

“We are playing now, I think as we expected to play early in the year,” said Pujols. “We didn’t, but we’ve had glimpses here and there. Now we’re playing the best baseball we’ve played all year.”

Wainwright called Pujols “incredible.”

“He still looks the same as when he left me,” Wainwright said. “This is what he should look like, here, in this stadium, doing these things.”

According to Elias Sports Bureau, the Cardinals are the first team in big league history to have a player of at least 40 years old hit a grand slam and at least 40 more to throw seven shutout-innings in the same game. Pujols is 42.2 years older than Wainwright.

The NL Central-leading Cardinals won their fourth in a row and sent Colorado to their fifth consecutive loss. St. Louis has won 12 of its past 13 home games and has won 12 direct from the Rockies at Busch Stadium.

Pujols hit his 690th home run of his career, joining Austin Gomber and finishing a third of five runs to make it 10-0. It was Pujols’ 16th grand slam of his career – his first as a pinch hitter – and it tied him with Hank Aaron, Babe Ruth and Dave Kingman for the 10th most slams of all time.

He became the first player to pinch a grand slam in the first three innings of a game since the Yankees’ Bobby Murcer on July 25, 1971, against the Brewers.

Cardinals manager Oliver Marmol said he went with the unconventional decision to squeeze Pujols in the third inning for designated batter Brendan Donovan because he liked the game against Gomber.

“He kills leftists,” Marmol said. “The game is never over, but you can put the game down there with a good swing and it’s always good to get the audience involved. We felt good about it and he did his job.”

Pujols added an RBI single.

“I think at the end of the day, just being part of a great organization, a great group of guys that want to win, young players that they watch, I’m blessed to be here and just help those guys,” said Pujols “It’s fun, trust me.”

Wainwright (10-9) gave up three hits, including two infield singles. He struckout seven batters, walked no and retired his last 13 batters.

“My job today was not to screw up,” he said. “The offense was the story. They were incredible, you know, and Albert making the grand slam, I mean, we kind of live in his shadow, right where we should be.”

This report uses information from The Associated Press.

The Valley Voice
The Valley Voicehttp://thevalleyvoice.org
Christopher Brito is a social media producer and trending writer for The Valley Voice, with a focus on sports and stories related to race and culture.

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