Pham, Stanley cue 4-run sixth to lift Cards over Astros

Gonzales tosses two solid innings in spring debut

Pham, Stanley cue 4-run sixth to lift Cards over Astros

JUPITER, Fla. -- A four-run sixth keyed by Tommy Pham and Cody Stanley lifted the Cardinals to a 5-2 win over the Astros at Roger Dean Stadium on Friday.

All of the Cardinals' sixth-inning runs were scored off Houston righty Alex White, who retired just one of seven batters he faced. Pham, who finished with a four-hit game, drove home one with a single. Stanley followed with a two-run double, after which an RBI single by Greg Garcia pushed the Cardinals' lead to five.

The offensive burst came long after the exit of both teams' starters. Marco Gonzales, looking to nudge his way into an Opening Day job in the Cardinals' rotation or bullpen, tossed two scoreless innings in his spring debut. The lefty allowed one hit, walked one and threw 17 of his 30 pitches for strikes.

Astros lefty Brett Oberholtzer, who is trying to solidify his spot in the rotation, also made his first appearance of the spring. The Cardinals peppered him for four hits (all singles) and scored an unearned run in the second when Matt Carpenter beat out what would have been an inning-ending double play.

The Astros debuted two of their new offensive pieces on Friday, with Evan Gattis serving as the designated hitter and Colby Rasmus starting in left. It was also a homecoming for Rasmus, a former first-round pick of the Cardinals. He went 0-for-2.

Gattis delivered a leadoff double in the seventh, an inning in which Houston would score twice off Cardinals reliever Nick Greenwood. Top prospect Carlos Correa contributed an RBI single in that inning.

Mark Reynolds, who started at first base, finished 0-for-3 in his Cardinals debut. Jason Heyward swiped the team's first base of spring, taking third after singling and moving to second on a hit by Matt Holliday.

Up next for the Cardinals: Making his first appearance since June 20, Jaime Garcia will start in the Cardinals' road game against the Nationals on Saturday. He will be opposed by Washington's Stephen Strasburg. First pitch is scheduled for 12:05 p.m. CT. Garcia will throw around 30 pitches as he tries to prove himself after thoracic outlet surgery and show that he is a viable candidate for the Cardinals' rotation. Randal Grichuk, who was slowed earlier in camp with lower back soreness, is expected to make his spring debut in the outfield. Watch the game live on MLB.TV.

Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.