The Cardinals early power surge wasn’t enough in an 8-4, ten-inning loss to the Cubs at Busch Stadium on Sunday. Closer Al Reyes allowed a lead off double to Todd Walker in the 10th, with the score tied 4-4. After an intentional walk, a sacrifice, another intentional walk and a strikeout, Reyes was just one out away from getting out of the jam. That’s when former Royal Neifi Perez stepped to the plate and belted his second career grand slam to break the tie and give Chicago an 8-4 lead.
John Mabry singled for the Cardinals in the 10th inning, but St. Louis didn’t score.
The Cardinals took a 3-0 lead in the first with three solo home runs from Abraham Nunez, Jim Edmonds and John Mabry.
Starting pitcher Jeff Suppan allowed just two runs in his six innings of work in the no decision. He gave up a solo home run to Henry Blanco in the second inning and Blanco got an RBI single off Suppan in the fourth to make the score 3-2.
The Cardinals held on to their one-run lead until the eighth inning when Aramis Ramirez hit a two-run home run off Julian Tavarez to make give Chicago a 4-3 lead.
St. Louis tied the game with a bit of excitement in the ninth inning to force extra innings. David Eckstein hit a two-out single and Hector Luna slid around a tag to score from second. Abraham Nunez followed up with another single to put runners at first and third with two outs for Albert Pujols, but he grounded out to end the inning.
Reyes dropped to 3-2 on the season with the loss, while Ryan Dempster blew the save for the Cubs in the ninth inning, but got the win to improve to 3-3.
The Cardinals dropped two-of-three to the Cubs and saw their lead in the N.L. Central drop to 11 games over the Astros and Chicago trails by 12. St. Louis is off tonight and will face the Padres in San Diego on Tuesday.