Down four on the road late against a team feeding off the adrenaline of its home opener, the Cardinals waited patiently for the buzz to wear off.
When it did, they pounced.
Kolten Wong hit a two-run homer to provide St. Louis with a much-needed spark, and the Cardinals took advantage of a bumpy outing by Pittsburgh’s bullpen to slip past the Pirates 6-5 in 11 innings Monday.
The Cardinals rallied to tie it in the eighth and again in the ninth, then took their first and only lead in the 11th. Paul DeJong singled off Steven Brault with two outs, moved to third after a hit batter and a walk, and sprinted home from third when Pittsburgh reliever Nick Kingham and catcher Francisco Cervelli got crossed up.
Kingham’s pitch squirted past Cervelli and went all the way to the backstop, allowing DeJong to score. “You knew you had to just keep your head down and keep going,” said Wong, who has three home runs through five games after hitting nine in 127 games in 2018.
Braves 8, Cubs 0: Brian McCann made the most of his Atlanta homecoming by hitting a two-run single in a four-run first inning, and the host Braves took advantage of six Chicago errors to win.
Brewers 4, Reds 3: Christian Yelich failed to homer for the first time this season, ending his record-tying streak, but he doubled in the ninth and scored on Ryan Braun’s double as Milwaukee rallied to beat Cincinnati before the smallest crowd in Great American Ball Park history: 7,799.
Astros 2, Rangers 1: Brad Peacock allowed two hits while pitching into the seventh, Robinson Chirinos looped a go-ahead double in his first game against his former team and Houston beat host Texas.
Indians 5, White Sox 3: Roberto Perez drew a bases-loaded walk on four pitches from Dylan Covey in the eighth inning as Cleveland rallied for a chilly win in its home opener over Chicago.
Yankees 3, Tigers 1: Domingo German overcame control problems on a chilly night to win for the first time since June, Gary Sanchez and Brett Gardner homered and banged-up New York beat visiting Detroit.
Orioles 6, Blue Jays 5: David Hess was pulled after 6 ⅓ hitless innings, but the Baltimore bullpen couldn’t see the bid through in beating host Toronto.
Rays 7, Rockies 1: Brandon Lowe and Kevin Kiermaier homered to back a strong performance by Tampa Bay’s bullpen in a win over visiting Colorado.
Mets 7, Marlins 3: Rookie Pete Alonso hit his first major-league homer, a three-run shot to cap a four-run ninth inning, and visiting New York overcame 16 strikeouts by its hitters to rally past Miami.
Diamondbacks 10, Padres 3: Merrill Kelly won his big-league debut at age 30 by throwing six strong innings and benefiting from an offensive outburst started by Adam Jones’ leadoff homer to lead visiting Arizona. San Diego rookie shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. hit his first big league homer, a two-run shot in the sixth that landed at the base of the Western Metal Supply Co. building beyond left field.
Mariners 6, Angels 3: Felix Hernandez allowed one earned run and pitched into the sixth inning for his first victory since June, and host Seattle beat Los Angeles. Demoted to the No. 5 spot in Seattle’s rotation after a career-worst season in 2018, Hernandez overcame shoddy defense to give the Mariners the kind of start they need from the nearly 33-year-old.
Briefly: Giancarlo Stanton and Miguel Andujar joined the Yankees’ ly injured list, putting nearly half of New York’s starting lineup on the sidelines. Stanton, who strained his left biceps, could miss much of April. Andujar’s injury is even more series: He sustained a small labrum tear in his right shoulder. Surgery is possible. … Cincinnati pitcher Hunter Greene will have Tommy John surgery after medical tests found new ligament damage in his right elbow. … The Dodgers’ Clayton Kershaw will make a minor-league rehab start Thursday in Oklahoma City in the next step of his return from shoulder inflammation.
This post was originally posted at https://www.sfgate.com/sports/article/Cardinals-beat-Pirates-on-a-passed-ball-in-the-13734081.php.