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Cardinals rally past Reds

Lengthy rain delay tests players' concentration in St. Louis victory

AP

The defending National League champions opened the season with a lot of waiting. And a couple of wins, too.

The St. Louis Cardinals overcame another long delay and Todd Frazier’s two homers on Thursday, holding on to beat the Cincinnati Reds 7-6 and take two of three in their season-opening series.

The first pitch was delayed 3 hours, 42 minutes because of rain. Some of the Cardinals spent their down time by studying Cincinnati’s pitchers again and getting a little extra work in the indoor batting cages.

“It’s tough to stay mentally into it,” said Matt Adams, who had a single and a pair of doubles. “That’s what we had to do to make sure we could go out there and perform. We’re watching video and taking swings in the cage and stretching and making sure we’re ready to go.”

Finally on the field, St. Louis emerged from its two-game hitting slump by knocking Homer Bailey (0-1) out of the game in the fifth inning. Jhonny Peralta homered to get it going.

It wasn’t perfect — the Cardinals stranded eight runners — but it was much better.

“We had a lot of opportunities that we missed, too,” manager Mike Matheny said. “We had a lot of guys in scoring position.”

St. Louis pulled away with three runs in the seventh, when Matt Holliday’s single off the top of the outfield wall was upheld by the only video review of the series, this one initiated by the umpires.

Lance Lynn (1-0) gave up Jay Bruce’s two-run homer and Frazier’s solo shot during five innings. Frazier added a three-run homer in the seventh that cut it to 7-6. Trevor Rosenthal got the last four outs for his second save.

The series involved nearly as much waiting as playing.

There was a 2-hour, 40-minute delay before Wednesday’s game, a 1-0 victory by Cincinnati. Along with the delay on Thursday, the teams wound up waiting 6 hours, 22 minutes to play during the two days.

As Thursday’s delay stretched on, Reds reliever Sam LeCure tweeted: “Uncle.”

“The whole series was kind of weird with all the rain and stuff,” Frazier said. “It really put a damper on things.”

The starters had a rough time after the delay.

Lynn beat Cincinnati three times last season, but couldn’t get a 1-2-3 inning on Thursday. Bruce and Frazier hit back-to-back homers in the first for a 3-0 lead. Even Bailey had a single off Lynn, who gave up eight hits while throwing 107 pitches.

Peralta hit a two-run homer in the second off Bailey, and St. Louis tied it with a breakthrough hit in the fourth. Adams doubled and came around on Jon Jay’s double, the Cardinals’ first hit with a runner in scoring position this season. They had been 0-for-17.

Jay’s hit also extended his hitting streak to 15 games, including the end of last season.

Giants 8, Diamondbacks 5

In Phoenix, Angel Pagan hit a three-run home run in San Francisco’s five-run eighth as the Giants rallied to beat Arizona in a game that was halted briefly in the top of the first due to a swarm of bees in the outfield.

Nationals 8, Mets 2

In New York, Tanner Roark recovered from a shaky first inning as an emergency starter in place of ailing Jordan Zimmermann as Washington rallied past the Mets for an opening three-game sweep.

Marlins 8, Rockies 5

In Miami, Giancarlo Stanton singled home the go-ahead run with two outs in the eighth inning, capping a comeback to help the Marlins beat Colorado.

Cubs 3, Pirates 2

In Pittsburgh, Jason Hammel pitched two-hit ball into the seventh inning as Chicago edged the Pirates.

AMERICAN LEAGUE

Yankees 4, Astros 2

In Houston, rookie Yangervis Solarte had three hits in his first major league start and Derek Jeter drove in a run to give New York its first win this season.

Solarte singled during a two-run third inning that put the Yankees up 2-1. He doubled in the fifth and scored on a single by Jeter to make it 3-1.

The Astros cut the lead to one in the bottom half before Solarte came through again, this time with a single that drove in Ichiro Suzuki, who was 2-for-4 with a two-out double in the seventh inning.

Ichiro, who batted eighth and played right field, scored two runs.

Athletics 3, Mariners 2 (12)

In Oakand, Coco Crisp homered leading off the bottom of the 12th inning to lift the Athletics past division rival Seattle.

Red Sox 4, Orioles 3

In Baltimore, David Ortiz had three of Boston’s 12 hits off Chen Wei-yin as the Red Sox got an effective pitching performance from Felix Doubront and four relievers.

Koji Uehara needed only seven pitches to retire the side in the ninth for his first save.

Rays 7, Blue Jays 2

In St. Petersburg, Florida, Chris Archer threw six solid innings and Evan Longoria hit a three-run homer as Tampa Bay split a four-game series with Toronto.

Twins 10, White Sox 9

In Chicago, Chris Colabello had a career-high six RBIs and Oswaldo Arcia hit a go-ahead triple as Minnesota avoided a season-opening sweep.

Royals at Tigers — ppd.