- Cape student sues, accuses school officials of slamming her to ground multiple times (04/28/16)46
- Bob Evans restaurant in Cape Girardeau among chain's 21 closings (04/26/16)9
- Missouri House votes to allow concealed weapons without permits (04/28/16)8
- Police report filed, but no charges in incident at Cape Central (04/29/16)39
- Two hurt in motorcycle wreck on Interstate 55 (04/25/16)1
- Senator introduces bill for I-57 that would connect Sikeston with Little Rock (04/28/16)4
- Law firm requests information about Cape's traffic cameras (04/25/16)2
- Local lawmakers split over failed medical marijuana bill; voters may have a say (04/26/16)19
- Local company makes eco-friendly kitty litter that cuts cat-box smell (04/25/16)
- Man accused of pointing BB gun at Chaffee resident (04/26/16)2
Cards change from winning streak to skid
CHICAGO -- Although the Chicago Cubs might be too far gone to be big winners this season, rookies Starlin Castro, Tyler Colvin and Andrew Cashner have the team excited about their future.
Castro and Colvin homered to complete an outstanding first week atop the batting order and Cashner used his triple-digit fastball to pitch out of two late-inning jams Saturday as the Cubs held on for a 6-5 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals.
"He's mature beyond his years," Cubs second baseman Ryan Theriot said of the 23-year-old Cashner. "We've got some talented kids here."
The Cardinals finally scored after being shut out the previous two days but didn't get enough clutch hits to avoid their third straight loss.
"We had some chances," Cardinals manager Tony La Russa said. "It was frustrating in a couple of places."
They had runners on the corners with nobody out in the seventh when Cashner came on to face Albert Pujols, one of baseball's most feared hitters. Pujols worked the count full and fouled off two 100 mph fastballs before hitting a deep sacrifice fly to make it 6-4.
Asked what he was thinking as Pujols dug in at the plate, Cashner said: "Not giving in. If I'm going to get beat, I'd rather get beat with my fastball."
After John Jay was caught stealing, Cashner -- who had a sore throat that required postgame treatment -- got Matt Holliday to ground out. An eighth-inning error by Theriot let a run score and put runners on first and second, but Cashner got Randy Winn to fly out and Tyler Greene to ground into a double play.
Carlos Marmol pitched a hitless ninth for his 18th save. La Russa felt umpire Tim Tschida called out the inning's leadoff man, Aaron Miles, on a pitch well out of the strike zone.
"Their reliever ... was treated like he was Greg Maddux," La Russa said, referring to the former All-Star pitcher who regularly got off-the-corner calls.
The Cubs, who are eight games under .500 and nine games behind St. Louis, built a 6-3 lead thanks mostly to Colvin and Castro. Since manager Lou Piniella decided last Sunday to put his two youngest position players atop the order, Colvin, 24, and Castro, 20, have combined to hit .385 with 13 runs and 11 RBIs.
One of the majors' lowest-scoring teams, Chicago has averaged 7.2 runs in the six games since the move, winning four times.
Colvin led off with a homer for the second straight day, the first Cubs player to do so since Alfonso Soriano in May 2008. He leads all rookies with 15 home runs.
After the Cardinals went up 2-1 on Greene's two-run second-inning single -- snapping their 21-inning scoreless streak -- Colvin drew a one-out walk in the third and scored when Castro homered on Blake Hawksworth's next pitch to put the Cubs ahead to stay.
Castro also doubled and singled. He is batting .489 with eight runs and eight RBIs in his last 11 games.
Colvin is impressed that after hitting .227 in June, Castro is batting .389 in July.
"He adjusted so quickly," Colvin said. "He scuffled a little bit, and now he's hitting every ball hard."
Tom Gorzelanny (6-5), in Chicago's rotation only because Carlos Zambrano was suspended after a June 25 dugout altercation with teammates, has won his last four starts. He allowed three runs on seven hits and three walks in six innings.
Hawksworth (4-6) left after allowing fifth-inning singles to Castro and Aramis Ramirez. Mitchell Boggs then walked Marlon Byrd and threw a wild pitch that let Castro score. Catcher Yadier Molina misfired while trying to throw out Castro, and Ramirez came home on the error to put the Cubs up 6-3.
Byrd added a third-inning RBI double for the Cubs, who today will go for their first sweep of the Cardinals in four years.
* On the one-year anniversary of his Cardinals debut, Holliday extended his hitting streak to 10 games but was retired on a soft liner to end the game.
* Colvin's 15 HRs are the most by a Cubs left-handed-hitting rookie since Mel Hall had 17 in 1983.