Jason Isringhausen was placed on the 15-day Disabled List yesterday with a cut on his right pitching hand, although what ails Izzy might be more mental than physical. 

Who knows what ails the Cardinals offense?

The Cards’ offense was shutdown by Tampa Bays’ Andy Sonnanstine last night, with the Birds falling to the Rays 3-1.  Timely hits continue to alude St. Louis hitters.  Chris Duncan’s solo homer in the eighth was the only run the Redbirds could muster, and slugger Albert Pujols had his on-base streak snapped, going 0-for-4 with a strikeout.  The first baseman had reached base safely in every game this season.

The loss was the Cards eighth in their last ten games.

Sonnanstine (6-1) kept the St. Louis offense off-balance all night, going eight strong innings and permitting Duncan’s blast to be the only damage allowed.  The Cards left six men on base.

Redbirds starter Braden Looper (5-3) did not have his best game, going six innings and giving up all three Tampa runs.  The Rays pounded out ten hits off the right-hander, who has lost his last two decisions.

Heralded prospect Chris Perez, called up from Triple-A Memphis after Isringhausen’s move to the DL, made his major league debut, turning heads in the process.  He worked a scoreless seventh for the Birds, striking out Evan Longoria on a 96 mile-an-hour fastball to end the inning.

Tony La Russa — Chris Perez — Braden Looper (1:32 MP3)