Jake Westbrook made his debut with the Cardinals on Monday night at Busch Stadium and pitched six innings and allowed two runs, but couldn’t pick up the win as the bullpen imploded in the 8th and 9th innings in a 9-4 loss to the Houston Astros who have now won six in a row.
Westbrook gave up two runs on four hits and a walk while striking out seven and left after six innings with a 3-2 lead thanks in part to Albert Pujols’ 26th homer of the season. His solo shot came in the fourth inning of Houston’s Brett Myers. The Cardinals added a run in the seventh, but things fell apart in the 8th inning.
Jason Motte walked with the first two batters and was relieved by Mike MacDougal, the former Royal. With one out MacDougal gave up an RBI single to Carlos Lee and a two run double to Jeff Keppinger.
Houston padded their lead in the ninth scoring four more times off Trever Miller and Blake Hawksworth, who made his first appearance since being demoted from the starting rotation.
Cincinnati blanked Pittsburgh to move a half game up on the Cardinals in the Central Division.