An Albert Pujols home run and an Allen Craig pinch-hit squib single returned the St. Louis Cardinals to a tenuous 9-4 lead in their emerging home run derby vs. the Milwaukee Brewers. Ex-closer Fernando Salas came on in relief of Edwin Jackson to put up the game’s first scoreless half-inning afterward, though it only came after Jon Jay made a leaping catch at the wall on a long fly ball from Prince Fielder.
The Brewers responded with a 1-2-3 of their own in the top of the fourth, with a similar disclaimer: It came on a line-drive double play off the bat of Lance Berkman, who looked a little less than fooled.
With 13 runs through three-plus innings neither team is going to be satisfied with a five run lead for a while yet. Tony La Russa’s incredibly high-intensity bullpen usage is likely to see its toughest test yet, with the entire pen available following Saturday’s off-day—but ahead of a possible Game 7 on Monday, which would bring Chris Carpenter and Yovani Gallardo to the mound without a lot of backup in the pen.