Cards walk off in ninth for sweep of D-backs

Cards walk off in ninth for sweep of D-backs

ST. LOUIS -- With a pair of ninth-inning runs -- the latter scoring on a throwing error by catcher Jordan Pacheco -- off reliever Brad Ziegler, the Cardinals stole a 4-3 win over the D-backs on Wednesday night, giving St. Louis its second walk-off victory in the three-game set and a sweep of Arizona at Busch Stadium. 

The game ended in wild fashion, with D-backs replacement catcher Pacheco sailing a throw into right field to allow the winning run to jog in from third. Pacheco, trying to finish off an inning-ending double play with the bases loaded, had his back foot hit on Peter Bourjos' aggressive slide home. That seemed to throw off his timing on the play. Jason Heyward had opened the inning with a solo blast to tie the game.

"We needed someone to step up," Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. "We talk about different characters trying to figure out how to get it done. We were about out of opportunities, and [Heyward] changed the complexity of that game."

The win was the Cardinals' first this season when trailing after eight innings. Contrastingly, Arizona had been 18-1 when carrying a lead into the ninth, and arrived to town having suffered only one walk-off loss this season. 

Ziegler entered the game riding a string of seven scoreless appearances and had allowed just one run on the road all season.

"Like I told them after the game, they busted their tails all three games," D-backs manager Chip Hale said. "I'm proud of them, they played hard, but we lost, so we have to do better."

Arizona starter Josh Collmenter allowed two runs over his five-inning start but was taken off the hook when the D-backs jumped in front with a two-run sixth. Pinch-hitter David Peralta delivered an RBI single in that frame. Cardinals starter Lance Lynn finished six innings, allowing three runs (two earned) on six hits.

MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Lift off: Heyward ended a string of six scoreless innings from the Cardinals' offense by blasting a leadoff homer in the ninth. The home run was a bit of redemption for the Cardinals right fielder, who had earlier let Arizona take the lead when he committed his second error in as many nights.

Heyward's game-tying homer

"This game is going to beat you up at times, but you've got to put it past you," Heyward said. "It's not about you, it's about your team. You take it one at-bat at a time, and thank goodness I was able to tie it." More >

RISP hit: The D-backs were 2-for-19 with runners in scoring position entering the series finale, and they were unable to come through in their first three opportunities Wednesday. But Peralta changed that in the sixth when his bloop single to right scored Cliff Pennington from second, with Heyward's error allowing Nick Ahmed to come all the way around from first base.

Into the record books: With his fifth-inning single, Cardinals left fielder Matt Holliday successfully reached base for the 43rd straight game to begin the season. That broke him out of a tie with Albert Pujols (2008) for the longest such streak in franchise history, but it also set a National League record, as the other five players with longer on-base streaks to open a season played for American League clubs.

Holliday sets NL record

"There are some great pitchers out there, and we've faced a lot of them," Holliday said. "To find your way on base in that many games in a row in the National League is pretty good." More >

Trumbo goes deep again: For the second time in the series, Mark Trumbo homered to dead-center. Trumbo's fourth-inning blast put the D-backs on the board and was his eighth of the year. Trumbo had gone 2-for-5 with a homer and two RBIs in his career against Lynn prior to Wednesday night.

Trumbo's solo tater

SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
Wednesday marked the first time the Cardinals have won a game when trailing after the eighth inning since Aug. 13, 2013, when they won on a walk-off hit by Adron Chambers in the 14th inning of a game against the Pirates.

INJURY REPORT
• Shortly after the start of Wednesday's game, the Cardinals announced that first baseman Matt Adams will miss the next three-to-four months while recovering from a right quadriceps strain. He suffered the injury running the bases on Tuesday. More >

•  D-backs catcher Tuffy Gosewisch suffered a jammed left knee while trying to beat out a grounder in the sixth inning Wednesday night. Pacheco replaced Gosewisch behind the plate in the bottom half of the inning. More >

Gosewisch exits with injury

WHAT'S NEXT
D-backs: After taking Thursday off, the D-backs open a three-game series against the Brewers in Milwaukee at 5:10 p.m. MST. Rubby De La Rosa will get the start for the D-backs and it will be his first career appearance against the Brewers.

Cardinals: After an off day on Thursday, the Cardinals will open a series against the first-place Dodgers with a 7:15 p.m. CT game on Friday. John Lackey will make the start for St. Louis opposite Mike Bolsinger. The Cardinals anticipate outfielder Jon Jay being activated from the disabled list before the game.

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Steve Gilbert is a reporter for MLB.com. Read his blog, Inside the D-backs, and follow him on Twitter @SteveGilbertMLB. Jenifer Langosch is a reporter for MLB.com. Read her blog, By Gosh, It's Langosch, follow her on Twitter @LangoschMLB and like her Facebook page Jenifer Langosch for Cardinals.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.