Cardinals Enter All-Star Break Tied for First Place
ST. LOUIS (AP) -- Jaime Garcia won for the sixth time at home and David Freese homered for the first time since April 12, helping the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Arizona Diamondbacks 4-2 on Sunday for a four-game split heading into the All-Star break.
Albert Pujols had two hits and Matt Holliday had an RBI single and a walk for the Cardinals, who were tied for the NL Central lead and have a roster finally healthy for the second half.
They're 3-3 since getting Pujols back from the DL and Freese prospered batting fifth after going 2 for 12 the previous three games batting second.
Brian Roberts hit a two-run homer for the Diamondbacks, who completed a 5-5 trip and are in second place in the NL West.
The Cardinals won with the 80th different lineup in 82 games under manager Tony La Russa, who got away with giving rookie backup catcher Tony Cruz his first career start in right field. Cruz made a nice sliding catch on a short flyout by Henry Blanco in the fourth and was replaced for defense in the sixth, with Colby Rasmus going to center and Jon Jay moving to right.
Roberts' two-run shot in the second was the only damage against Garcia, who entered with a major league best 0.94 ERA at home and ended the day 6-1 at Busch Stadium with a 1.14 ERA in nine starts. Garcia (9-3) leads the staff in victories a year after finishing third in the NL Rookie of the Year balloting and has won his last three starts overall.
Freese answered in the third with his first homer in 13 games off the disabled list from a broken left hand, a two-run opposite-field shot off Zach Duke (2-4) to right. He had been 3 for 24 with no RBIs the previous seven games and in 41 at-bats since returning from a 51-game absence had totaled one double and one RBI.
Fernando Salas worked the ninth for his 16th save in 18 chances, giving up a hit with a strikeout.
Duke gave up four runs in six innings. He's 1-4 in eight starts since June 2.
The Cardinals got three straight hits in the first, including a double by Pujols and an RBI single by Holliday, and Freese made it 2-0 with a sacrifice fly.
Roberts tied it in the second with a two-run homer, his 11th of the year and first since June 12.