- The Washington Times - Tuesday, April 21, 2009

ST. LOUIS (AP) - Rick Ankiel hit a go-ahead RBI double after Daniel Murphy misplayed Brendan Ryan’s liner to left field for a triple, and the St. Louis Cardinals rallied from four runs down to beat the New York Mets 6-4 Tuesday night.

Albert Pujols had a two-run double, Ankiel broke out of a 1-for-20 slide with three hits for the Cardinals. Khalil Greene, Joe Thurston and Ryan Ludwick also had RBIs for St. Louis.

The Mets, who blew an early 4-0 lead, had a chance to break the tie in the top of the eighth but Carlos Beltran was tagged out at home when he tried to score on an errant throw to third. Beltran tagged up on Ramon Castro’s fly to right off Jason Motte (1-0) and raced home when the ball rolled toward the unattended pitcher’s mound. Instead of sliding, Beltran went in standing up and was tagged on the back by Yadier Molina to end the inning.

Motte got the last two outs in the eighth to earn his first major league win. Ryan Franklin pitched a perfect ninth for his third save.

Ankiel, who went 1-for-18 on the Cardinals’ recent six-game road trip, had three straight hits after being retired in his first two at-bats to lift his average to .227. He also scored twice.

Ryan led off the bottom half with a liner off J.J. Putz (1-1) to left that Daniel Murphy charged in for, but Murpy misjudged the ball and fell trying to correct himself. The ball rolled to the wall and Ryan had a triple. Ankiel followed with his double to right.

Ludwick gave the Cardinals a 6-4 lead run when hit a sacrifice fly.

On April 12, Murphy dropped a flyball that led to two runs for Florida in a 2-1 win and cost Johan Santana a victory.

New York seemed headed for an easy night, scoring four times in the first four innings against Cardinals starter Todd Wellemeyer. Wellemeyer who gave up a career high 12 hits in his lone start against the Mets last season, gave up 10 hits this time in five innings.

Beltran had an RBI double, and Jose Reyes, David Wright and Murphy had RBI singles.

But the Cardinals chased Mets starter Oliver Perez and tied the game by scoring four times in the fifth inning.

Pujols hit his two-run double after Wellemeyer singled and Ankiel each singled to center.

Perez, who allowed four runs on six hits and five walks, got Ludwick to pop out to first, but walked Molina and gave up an infield single to Chris Duncan to load the bases. Greene then walked to score a run to make it 4-3.

Casey Fossum, making his Mets’ debut, relieved and walked Thurston on four pitches to tie it.

Notes: Mets RHP Mike Pelfrey, who missed his last start due to forearm tendinitis, threw in bullpen before game and is set to make his next start on Saturday. Manager Jerry Manuel said Pelfrey didn’t have great command but had no pain. “Nice and easy. I thought the command could have been a little better. Oh yeah, he’ll be ready,” Manuel said. … Duncan extended his hitting streak to a career-best 13 games. … New York’s Luis Castillo has 15 hits in his last 30 at-bats.

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