Down 4-0, the Cardinals roared back to beat the Pirates 6-5 in 11 innings to spoil the Bucs home opener in Pittsburgh on Monday afternoon.
Adam Wainwright started on the mound for the Cards and allowed four runs in four innings of work. The Redbirds didn’t dent the scoreboard until the seventh inning when Kolten Wong’s two run homer cut the lead in half at 4-2. It’s Wong’s third homer of the young season. A bases loaded walk to Paul Goldschmidt in the same inning cut the deficit to 4-3. Tyler O’Neill tied the game 4-4 on a run scoring double in the eighth inning.
But Pirates third baseman Colin Moran regained the lead in the bottom half of the inning with a solo home run off Mike Mayers and Pittsburgh led again, 5-4.
Cardinals pinch hitter Jose Martinez delivered a game tying double in the ninth inning that scored Paul DeJong and it was knotted at 5-5.
The teams played into extra innings and it was the Cardinals grabbing their first lead of the game in the 11th inning. With the bases loaded, DeJong scored on a passed ball by Pirates catcher Francisco Cervelli to make it 6-5 St. Louis.
Cardinals third baseman Matt Carpenter was ejected in that 11th inning for arguing a check swing third strike. That meant Yadier Molina had to move from catcher to third base to replace Carpenter. It was the first time Molina appeared at third base in his big league career. Cardinals relief pitcher John Gant induced a game ending double play to end the marathon contest and get his first save of the season. Jordan Hicks got the win in relief pitching two scoreless innings.
The win gives the Cardinals a 2-3 record so far in this 2019 baseball season, They have Tuesday off and play Wednesday in Pittsburgh before their home opener on Thursday, April 4 at Busch Stadium against the San Diego Padres.