ANAHEIM CA - JULY 12: National League All-Star Matt Holliday #7 of the St. Louis Cardinals swings the bat during the first round of the 2010 State Farm Home Run Derby during All-Star Weekend at Angel Stadium of Anaheim on July 12 2010 in Anaheim California. (Photo by Lisa Blumenfeld/Getty Images)

All-Star Break: Holliday, National League Finally Make It Count

At Monday's Home Run Derby, the Cardinals' chick-impressing drought ran to 0-14.

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National League Wins First All-Star Game Since 1996, Brian McCann Delivers Crucial Double

The National League took its first All-Star Game victory since 1996 Tuesday night, thanks to a bases-loaded double from reserve catcher Brian McCann and some ninth inning defensive ingenuity from Cubs outfielder Marlon Byrd.

McCann drove in Scott Rolen, Cardinal Matt Holliday, and Byrd with a double down the right field line in the seventh inning, and Adam Wainwright and Brian Wilson put up scoreless innings to take the National League’s lead into the ninth.

But Dodgers closer Jonathan Broxton was nearly undone by a scratched-together rally in the bottom of the ninth. After a leadoff single from David Ortiz the game appeared in doubt when John Buck slapped a fair hit to center field, but Byrd made a desperate spin and threw the ball to second to force out the Red Sox first baseman for the second out. Ian Kinsler flew out in the next at-bat and the game was over.

The National League’s last win, in 1996, was credited to John Smoltz. Ozzie Smith played. Ken Caminiti drove in a run. It’s been a while.

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2010 All-Star Game: Wainwright Gets Out Of Tough Seventh

A Matt Holliday gaffe that looked suspiciously like a play in Dodgers Stadium (that will not be discussed here) didn’t phase Adam Wainwright, who recovered from that gift double to strike Torii Hunter out on a series of 90 mph sliders.

The National League remains ahead 3-1 in the top of the eighth inning.

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Matt Holliday Scores Go-Ahead Run For National League In Seventh

Matt Holliday scored the go-ahead run for the National League in the seventh inning after hitting a single that sent Scott Rolen to third. Marlon Byrd drew a walk and Brian McCann, who had replaced Yadier Molina earlier in the game, hit a double down the right field line to clear the bases.

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2010 All-Star Lineup: Albert Pujols Bats Third, Yadier Molina Ninth

Here's the National League lineup for the 2010 All-Star Game, featuring two of the Cardinals' five All-Stars:

1. Hanley Ramirez
2. Martin Prado
3. Albert Pujols
4. Ryan Howard
5. David Wright
6. Ryan Braun
7. Andre Ethier
8. Corey Hart
9. Yadier Molina
SP Ubaldo Jimenez

The hitting drop-off from Corey Hart, NL Home Runs leader, to Yadier Molina in this lineup has to be one of the bigger ones in recent history. 

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Cardinals All-Stars Arrive In Anaheim In Style, Numbers

At the mothership Matthew Leach has a great story about the Cardinals’ All-Star contingent’s trip to California, which involved considerably fewer stops at a Super 8 than my average trip to California:

Now [Matt Holliday is] a Cardinal, part of a hefty contingent along with Albert Pujols, Yadier Molina, Chris Carpenter and Adam Wainwright.

Moreover, the trip was arranged by Pujols, who chartered the jet that carried the five Redbirds west on Sunday. It’s the largest cadre of Cardinals All-Stars since the reigning National League champions sent six players to Detroit in 2005.

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Matt Holliday Gets Ready For Home Run Derby

Cardinals left fielder Matt Holliday will join Milwaukee Brewer Corey Hart and six other players in tonight's Home Run Derby, set to take place tonight at 7 PM on ESPN. It's Holliday's second performance in the Derby; in 2007 he tied Albert Pujols for third in the contest and went on to hit 21 home runs after the All-Star Break. 

That third place finish is the Cardinals' highest showing in a Home Run Derby since 2003, when Albert Pujols finished second to Garret Anderson but hit the most total home runs of any contestant, something Mark McGwire also managed in his famous 1999 exhibition at Fenway Park. The Cardinals have never had a winner; past Cardinals contestants include Jack Clark (1985), Ray Lankford (1997), Mark McGwire (1998-1999), Jim Edmonds (2003), and Albert Pujols (2003, 2007, 2009.)

At 0-13, the Cardinals' streak of non-winners is the longest in baseball. 

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Eduardo Sanchez Makes Futures Game Appearance

Cardinals relief prospect Eduardo Sanchez appeared in the eighth inning of today’s Futures Game for the World team. Recording two outs, he sat at 95 mph with a running fastball that topped out at 97 and got a swinging strike. He allowed a run on an error and a wild pitch before being removed.

Perhaps most distinctive was his motion. He’s a small guy, and he throws exactly like a small guy who can hit 97 with his fastball.

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Shelby Miller Goes 2/3 Of An Inning In Futures Game

Shelby Miller, the Cardinals' top prospect, pitched two-thirds of an inning in the MLB Futures Game before being removed Sunday night. Miller showed off a moving fastball that sat around 94—touching 96—and threw one curveball before being lifted in an attempt to get as many players as possible into the game.

He allowed one baserunner, who was erased on a botched stolen base attempt.

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Futures Game Features Cardinals Shelby Miller and Eduardo Sanchez

The Cardinals’ two representatives in the Futures Game, starting pitcher and top prospect Shelby Miller of the USA team and Memphis reliever Eduardo Sanchez of the World team, are in the bullpen for tonight’s start of the All-Star Game festivities.

The game begins at 5 PM; it’s live on ESPN2, and Viva El BIrdos will be following along, too.

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Your Cardinals All-Stars: Pujols, Molina, Holliday, Wainwright, And Carpenter

Matt Holliday’s first half probems with runners in scoring position must not have been a problem for the NL at large: He was one of five Cardinals named Sunday morning to the 2010 National League All-Star Team.

Albert Pujols, baseball’s leading vote getter, is the starter at first base, and he’s joined in the starting lineup by a slumping but still popular Yadier Molina, who will catch. It’s Pujols’s ninth all-star appearance and Molina’s second.

In addition to Holliday, a reserve outfielder and four-time all-star, the Cardinals will send starting pitchers Adam Wainwright and Chris Carpenter, who each come off their 2009 Cy Young near-miss with double-digit wins in the first half of 2010. Wainwright is a first-time all-star, while this is Carpenter’s third appearance, and his second since starting the 2005 game for the National League squad.

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