Friday's game- Twins 6, Cardinals 2

Saturday, March 9, 2002

Friday's game


JUPITER, Fla. -- So Taguchi got his first hits of the spring, snapping an 0-for-14 slump that featured mostly weak groundouts, in the Cardinals' 6-2 loss to the Twins on Friday.

Taguchi, trying to become the third Japanese position player in the major leagues, singled on a two-strike count off the mound and up the middle against Eric Milton for an RBI in the second inning. He added an opposite-field single off Brad Thomas in the fourth before flying out against Mike Jackson in the sixth.

The Cardinals signed Taguchi, 32, to a three-year, $3 million contract after he had spent 10 seasons with the Orix Blue Wave of the Japanese League. Taguchi, who played center field Friday, is among a large contingent competing for the left field job and previously had shown only strong defensive skills.

Josh Pearce, the Cardinals' second-round pick in 1999, allowed a run on four hits in three innings. Pearce was subbing for Rick Ankiel, who has been bothered by elbow pain, and he could take Ankiel's spot in the rotation again for Wednesday's game.-- AP

Today's game

Cardinals vs. Expos, 10:50 a.m., KGIR-1220, KBXB-97.9

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