Posted: May 15, 2022 / 09:48 PM CDT
Updated: May 16, 2022 / 05:10 AM CDT
Yadier Molina homered and drove in four runs and Adam Wainwright tossed six effective innings to lead the St. Louis Cardinals to a 15-6 win over the San Francisco Giants on Sunday night that ended with veteran slugger Albert Pujols on the mound.
Pujols, the Cardinals’ designated hitter, came into the game as a pitcher for the first time in his career in the ninth inning. He gave up a three-run homer to Luis Gonzalez and a solo homer to Joey Bart but managed to get the final three outs.
Joc Pederson had a two-run homer for San Francisco, which lost its second in a row after winning six straight.
Molina capped a four-run outburst in the first inning off Carlos Rodon (4-2) with a two-run single. Molina added a two-run homer off reliver Zack Littell in the fifth to push the lead to 11-0.
Wainwright (4-3) gave up two runs and three hits. He struck out five and walked two. The right-hander retired 14 of the first 15 batters he faced. Gonzalez got the Giants’ first hit with a two-out single in the fifth.
Wainwright and Molina set a major league record with 203 wins by a starting battery. They passed Warren Spahn and Del Crandall, who amassed 202 wins for the Boston/Milwaukee Braves from 1949-63.
Rodon (4-2) allowed eight runs and 10 hits over 3 2/3 innings. He struck out three and walked one. He had given up just seven earned runs over his previous six starts this season.
Every St. Louis starter had a hit by the sixth inning.
St. Louis rookie outfielder Juan Yepez singled in the first inning. He has reached safely in each of his first 11 games, the longest streak by a Cardinals rookie since Luis Alicea reached in 23 successive games to begin his career in 1988.
The Cardinals went 0-4 in Sunday night games last year before winning in their first try this season.
Gonzalez came in from the outfield to pitch in the seventh with the bases loaded and two outs. He gave up a run-scoring single to Dylan Carlson before getting Harrison Bader to fly out.