30° Good Evening
30° Good Evening

Yadier Molina has three hits in return to Cardinals' lineup

The St. Louis Cardinals needed a lift. Lucky for them, Yadier Molina was ready to return to the lineup.

Molina had three hits and two RBIs, leading the host Cardinals to a big 5-4 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates Saturday.

St. Louis bounced back from Friday night's 2-1 loss in the series opener and pulled within a game of Pittsburgh for the second NL wild-card spot. Jaime Garcia is expected to come off the disabled list to start Sunday's series finale against the Pirates' Jeff Karstens.

Molina also scored a run after missing the previous three games with a sore back. The All-Star catcher hit a tiebreaking two-run double off Erik Bedard (7-13) in the fifth inning to give the Cardinals a 5-3 lead.

The Cardinals had scored just two runs in their previous two games. Batting sixth, Molina went 3-for-4.

"It feels so good," said Molina, who indicated his back was not bothering him after the game. "I was waiting for this moment the last three days. It's good to be back, it's good to get the win."

Pittsburgh loaded the bases with no outs in the ninth against Jason Motte (28th save) but only managed one run on Andrew McCutchen's infield out.

Reds 5, Cubs 3: Johnny Cueto (16-6) pitched eight crisp innings and Todd Frazier hit a go-ahead homer for the second straight game and host Cincinnati took the opener of a day-night doubleheader.

"Don't get me wrong," Cueto said through an interpreter after improving to 11-0 with a 1.62 ERA in 13 day games this season. "I like throwing at night, but I like pitching in the day, too. It's not really different. It's all in how I get prepared the night before day games."

Orioles 3, Tigers 2: Chris Davis hit a three-run homer and visiting Baltimore snapped Detroit's four-game winning streak. Zach Britton (2-1) struck out five in seven sparkling innings and Jim Johnson got three outs for his 36th save. -- AP

New York Sports