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“I don’t think there was intent, to be honest, hurting somebody,” Bochy said. “But it was late. Marco was behind the bag, he really didn’t hit dirt until he got behind the base.

“And the second baseman, he’s in a position there where there can be some damage done, as we saw. He came out of this plenty good considering how hard he got hit.”

Added Scutaro: “I don’t know too much about sliding rules, but I think it was a little late. I don’t think he was intentionally doing it.”

Scutaro came out of Game 2 in the fifth inning because he was having trouble running, particularly side to side. He said his leg had gone numb, too.

Pain in the left knee developed on Tuesday, and Scutaro said both the hip and knee were stiff during the workout. If he can’t start, Ryan Theriot would play second.

St. Louis didn’t work out Tuesday after a late-night return flight to the Midwest. The exception was a 49-pitch simulated game by Jake Westbrook, who is recovering from a strained right oblique and is hopeful of rejoining the staff if St. Louis makes it to the World Series.

After Game 2, Holliday said he relayed an apology of sorts to Giants catcher Busty Posey before his next at-bat.

“I told Buster to tell Marco I wish I had started my slide a step earlier,” Holliday said. “I wanted him to know I wasn’t trying to hurt him. When a guy has to leave the game, I feel bad.”

Holliday also defended his hard-nosed approach.

“When I’m at first and see a grounder to short, I’m just trying to make sure they can’t turn the double play,” Holliday said. “He was right on second base. I hope he’s OK. He’s a good guy.”

Back at home, where Holliday will get cheers instead of boos, Matheny said what happened is just part of the game.

“To me, what I see is a guy who I’ve never seen one act of trying to hurt anybody,” Matheny said. “And I would never believe that’s what he was trying to do. I know what Matt’s intentions were and he was thinking about his team at the time.”

Lohse hopes to end a string of early exits for Cardinals starters in Game 3. He’s all about efficiency, avoiding extended at-bats and letting hitters get themselves out.

St. Louis has gone three straight games without a starter getting an out in the fifth inning. Matheny said travel days during the postseason lessen the burden and keep pitchers fresh. Still, he’d rather not keep making those early trips to the mound.

“You have strong starting pitching, you have an opportunity to be successful,” Matheny said. “Otherwise, you’re fighting an uphill battle all the time and it seems like you’re constantly coming back.”

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