- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 14, 2009

PHOENIX (AP) - Brian Barden broke a tie with his first career home run, Albert Pujols also homered and the St. Louis Cardinals defeated the Arizona Diamondbacks 2-1 on Monday night for their fifth straight win.

With the game tied 1-all in the eighth, the righty-swinging Barden lined a 3-2 pitch from Doug Davis (0-2) over the fence in right field. It was the first homer in 51 big league at-bats for Barden, who briefly played for the Diamondbacks in 2007.

Todd Wellemeyer (1-1) went seven sharp innings, giving up one run on seven hits and striking out four.

Ryan Franklin pitched a scoreless ninth for his first save.

With Chase Field’s roof open, Davis and Wellemeyer dueled on an 83-degree night in the desert.

Davis bounced back from a poor first outing in which he gave up four runs, four hits and four walks in five innings in a loss to Colorado on April 8.

Davis retired the first seven Cardinals he faced. Davis kept St. Louis off-balance most of the night, but the Cardinals made him pay for his mistakes.

Pujols lined an 0-1 pitch in the fourth inning deep into the left-field seats for his fourth homer. Then Barden homered to the open the eighth.

Davis allowed two runs on seven hits in eight innings, walking one and striking out five. Davis lasted eight innings only once in 26 starts last year.

The two solo shots were enough on a night the Diamondbacks struggled to come up with big hits against Wellemeyer.

Arizona tied it at 1 in the bottom of the fourth on a leadoff single by Conor Jackson and a double by Chad Tracy. But a chance for a bigger inning evaporated when Tracy took a wide turn at second and was nailed on a heads-up peg by Pujols.

In the third, the Diamondbacks had runners at second and third with one out, but Wellemeyer got Chris Young to pop to second base and then retired Stephen Drew on a dribbler to the mound.

Facing reliever Dennys Reyes in the eighth, Drew bounced to first base to strand the potential tying run at second.

Notes: The Diamondbacks play their first nine games at home, and 18 of their first 21 games. But Chase Field hadn’t been much of an advantage for Arizona, which had dropped two of three games to Colorado and the Los Angeles Dodgers.

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