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Pujols' 12th Homer Leads Cardinals

April 25, 2006|From the Associated Press

Albert Pujols hit his major league-leading 12th home run and the Cardinals defeated the Pittsburgh Pirates, 7-2, Monday at St. Louis.

Chris Carpenter (3-1) gave up eight hits in six innings and said he "was up in the strike zone" more than he has been, but he came away with his sixth consecutive victory over the Pirates.

Pujols added a run-scoring double for his 28th run batted in, also tops in the majors, to help send the Pirates to their fifth loss in a row. Jason Bay hit his fifth homer for the Pirates, who have lost 10 of their last 11 on the road.

Pujols' shot to left field in the first against Oliver Perez (1-3) left him one home run shy of the major league record for April shared by Ken Griffey Jr. (1997) and Luis Gonzalez (2001) with six games left.

San Francisco 6, New York 2 -- Moises Alou homered and drove in five runs after two intentional walks to Barry Bonds to lead the host Giants. Alou hit a three-run homer in the first inning and a two-run single in the seventh.

Matt Cain (1-2) had a perfect game through five innings but Kaz Matsui singled up the middle to start the sixth.

Arizona 4, San Diego 1 -- Brandon Webb (3-0) gave up six hits and struck out four in eight-plus innings and Johnny Estrada hit a two-run double at San Diego.

Webb was chased after pinch-hitter Mark Bellhorn and Dave Roberts opened the ninth inning with singles, but Jose Valverde got three outs for his fourth save.

Chicago 6, Florida 3 -- Jacque Jones hit a three-run homer to cap a six-run eighth inning at Chicago.

Carlos Zambrano matched a career high with 12 strikeouts but remained winless in five starts. Trailing 3-0 after producing only one hit against left-hander Jason Vargas in the first 6 1/3 innings, the Cubs broke through in the eighth against Matt Herges and Josh Johnson (1-2).

Milwaukee 3, Atlanta 2 -- Chris Capuano pitched seven strong innings and Corey Koskie hit his first home run for the host Brewers. Capuano (3-2) gave up a leadoff triple to Marcus Giles in the third, then retired 12 of the next 13 batters.

Cincinnati 4, Washington 2 -- Elizardo Ramirez pitched effectively into the eighth inning for his first major league win and the Reds rode an early 3-0 lead. The Nationals fell to 1-5 at home this season, and the announced crowd of 19,264 was the smallest at 46,382-capacity RFK Stadium since baseball returned to the capital, eclipsing Sunday night's previous low of 21,569.

Philadelphia 6, Colorado 5 -- Cory Lidle struck out 10 and Bobby Abreu drove in three runs to lead the host Phillies. Lidle (2-2) fell one strikeout shy of matching his career high before he was chased with a 6-3 lead and two runners on and two outs in the seventh.

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