Maness, Rosenthal work out of jam sessions

Relievers douse D-backs' scoring threats with late-inning flair

Maness, Rosenthal work out of jam sessions

ST. LOUIS -- In order to salvage a win after Kevin Siegrist's blown save on Monday, the Cardinals needed Seth Maness to offer what he hasn't in more than a month and Trevor Rosenthal to provide the sort of coverage he hadn't since last year.

Together, Maness and Rosenthal stranded five Arizona runners, four in scoring position, buying the Cardinals' offense time to strike again. And in the 10th inning, Jhonny Peralta did, with his leadoff home run jumpstarting the Memorial Day celebration of a 3-2 win at Busch Stadium.

Peralta's walk-off homer

That Peralta was in that position, though, had everything to do with the bullpen's damage control that preceded his at-bat.

Maness entered to an eighth-inning mess manufactured by Siegrist. Arizona had already tied the game with Mark Trumbo's two-run blast, and two subsequent walks complicated the inning further. Maness, the team's double-play whiz, couldn't produce one of his two-for-one specialties, but still garnered three straight outs to preserve the tie game.

"That's a big story in this game," manager Mike Matheny said. "You come in there after single, homer, walk, walk and then somehow get us out of it, that's a great job by Seth Maness, especially when he hasn't felt like himself or had the results that are typical of Seth. But I don't know of a bigger outing than what he had right there."

Matheny on team's walk-off win

Maness, who had been nicked for 19 hits in 10 1/3 innings this month, hadn't made a clean one-inning appearance since April 22.

"It was good for the confidence, for sure," Maness said.

Rosenthal handled the ninth on nine pitches, a total low enough that Matheny sent him back out for the 10th. A one-out walk sandwiched between two singles brought Matheny to the mound. Rosenthal followed the conference by dialing up the velocity. He struck out Chris Owings on a 100-mph fastball and registered two more at that speed to induce the inning-closing groundout. It marked his first two-inning appearance since April 28, 2014, a span of 81 outings.

Rosenthal gets out of jam

"You look at the consistency that he's having and the way he's attacking hitters," Matheny said. "We like his overall approach, and what is there not to like about his stuff. Overall, I'm not sure you can ask him to do much more than what he's done. He's been resilient."

Rosenthal threw 28 pitches, though that wasn't too pressing a concern because he had pitched just once since May 18. Asked about the benefit of time off, Rosenthal keyed in on another contributing factor to the early-season success.

"For me, this year compared to last, having more efficient innings and minimizing pitch counts has made me feel better physically," said Rosenthal, who has a 0.81 ERA over 21 appearances. "Hopefully I can continue to do that and it makes Mike's job a little bit easier, too, with situating the bullpen."

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