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Braves Beat Cards, 12-3

Tom Ackerman
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LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (KMOX) — The Cardinals lost to the Braves, 12-3 at ESPN Wide World of Sports at Disney World on Tuesday.

Starter Jake Westbrook pitched four innings for the Cardinals, allowing two runs on three hits.  Westbrook walked three, struck out one and hit a batter.

The Braves did their damage to Westbrook in the third inning.  A leadoff walk issued to Ramiro Pena led to trouble.  Jason Heyward doubled to left, putting runners at second and third with no one out.  Justin Upton then drove in a run with a sacrifice fly to right.  His brother, B.J., followed with an RBI single.

In the bottom of the seventh, the Braves scored five runs, all of which were charged to Edward Mujica, whose ERA ballooned to 15.00 for the spring.

Cardinals pitching coach Derek Lilliquist said Mujica has been working on a slider – sometimes during hitter’s counts – in addition to his fastball-changeup repertoire.

“I’m not worred about Mujica one bit,” Lilliquist said.

Jason Motte allowed three runs in the eighth inning, but none of the tallies were earned.  The Cardinals committed three errors on the afternoon.

The Cardinal bats were silent against Braves starter Julio Teheran, who didn’t allow a hit in his five innings of work.  Teheran fanned six over those five frames.  He has 18 strikeouts in 14 innings this spring.

The Cardinals recorded their first hit in the top of the sixth, a single by Adron Chambers.  But Chambers was later thrown out when he bolted for home during a Daniel Descalso steal attempt of second base.

The Cards finally broke a string of 29 consecutive innings without a run – dating back to Saturday — when Oscar Taveras doubled and scored on a base hit by Tony Cruz in the top of the seventh.

Wednesday is a complete day off for the Redbirds.  They’ll host the Braves on Thursday.  Manager Mike Matheny will be back with the club by then, recovering from back surgery.  Matheny spent Tuesday afternoon listening to the game from home.  He is scheduled to return to Jupiter on Wednesday night.

Tuesday in Jupiter, pitcher Marc Rzepczynski threw off a mound for the first time since suffering a freak eye injury on the golf course.  Rzepczynski said it was a positive session.

The Cardinals cut three players from their spring training roster after the game:

  • Optioned pitcher Kevin Siegrist to Memphis.
  • Returned pitcher Barret Browning to minor league camp; assigned him to Memphis.
  • Returned catcher Cody Stanley to minor league camp; assigned him to Springfield.
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