Lafayette High graduate Ryan Howard joined teammates Chase Utley and Pat Burrell in making sure Cardinal fans knew last night’s game was over early.  Utley, Howard and Burrell hit consecutive home runs in the first inning of the Phillies’ 20-2 victory.

Howard, the 2006 NL MVP, went yard twice against his hometown team, and received a standing ovation after coming up to the plate in the eighth inning.  He was subsequently hit by a pitch from Russ Springer, and Springer was ejected by home plate umpire Larry Vanover.  Cards manager Tony La Russa came out to argue, and that went about as well as you would expect.  La Russa was ejected, and then acting manager Jose Oquendo was tossed when he argued the following inning that a Phillies pitcher should have been ejected after he threw a pitch behind the Cardinals Ryan Ludwick.

Todd Wellemeyer was making his first start since June 5th.  He missed his previous turn in the rotation due to inflammation in his throwing elbow, and perhaps a little more time off was necessary.  Truth be told, however, it did not really matter who the Redbirds threw out there, because the Phillies just kept hitting.

Tony La Russa — Russ Springer — Todd Wellemeyer (1:02 MP3)