Cardinals starter Jason Marquis lasted six and a third innings and drove in three runs with a triple to lead the Birds over the Reds 5-1 at Busch Stadium. With the bases loaded in the second inning, Marquis hit a triple to give St. Louis a 3-1 lead. On the mound, he was just as impressive, allowing one run off five hits and two walks in 6 1/3 innings. Marquis improved to 1-0 and lowered his ERA to 1.46.

Al Reyes, Ray King and Carmen Cali finished the game, giving up just one hit the rest of the way.

Jim Edmonds hit his second home run and Reggie Sanders his third, as St. Louis ended a two-game skid. Mark Mulder faces Ramon Ortiz at 12:10 this afternoon.

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch is reporting that the Cardinals are close to a three year deal with pitcher Chris Carpenter. If it happens, that would tie up all but one starter, Jason Marquis, through next season.