MIAMI (AP) - When Tommy Pham was hit by a pitch in the left hand in his first at-bat, it did not look like he would be able to stay in the game.
Not only did Pham finish, but he had an RBI single and a two-run homer to help lead the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Miami Marlins 11-6 on Friday night.
“It didn’t affect him hitting the ball to dead center in the biggest park in the country,” Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. “That was a pretty nice sign that things should be OK, but we’ll wait to see what the medical team says.”
The pain got to be too much in Pham’s final at-bat as he struck out looking, unable to swing the bat.
“I have anti-inflammatory pills that help you get through the game, but it was sore,” Pham said. “That last swing I took my hand went numb and I couldn’t swing.”
“I literally just took the pitch strike three down the middle because I couldn’t feel my hand,” he said.
Pham said his hand is not broken and expects to be ready for Saturday’s game.
“It’s not broken, so you have to come here ready,” Pham said.
Pham was one of a number of contributors for the Cardinals. Kolten Wong had three hits and drove in two runs and Jeremy Hazelbaker hit a two-run homer.
The Cardinals have won four of five and lead the Marlins by one game in the NL wild-card standings.
Miami outfielder Ichiro Suzuki went 0 for 4 to remain at 2,998 career hits.
Martin Prado homered and drove in three runs, and Marcell Ozuna also homered for the Marlins.
Mike Leake (8-8) won despite giving up six runs and seven hits in five innings.
Jose Urena (1-3) allowed eight runs in 4 1-3 innings in what is expected to be his final start in the Marlins’ rotation after Miami acquired starters Andrew Cashner and Colin Rea from San Diego earlier in the day.
Hazelbaker homered off Urena in the second. It was their first encounter since the two were involved in a bench-clearing brawl in a minor league game on June 27.
“That’s the thing about baseball and you usually have a chance to get back at somebody that you have a history with,” Hazelbaker said. “It was a satisfying time and I’m glad that it happened,”
In that minor league game, Urena’s pitch went sailing near Hazelbaker’s head, prompting the two to square off and punches were thrown.
“That history, you don’t forget about that stuff,” Matheny said. “That means something to guys when they get the opportunity to compete.”
St. Louis scored three in the second and six more in the fifth for a 9-1 lead, Prado’s three-run homer highlighted a five-run rally by the Marlins in the bottom of the fifth.
“For a moment after I hit it, you felt the energy in the stadium,” Prado said. “The people got into the game.”
“I know we got a tough loss today, but we’re showing signs that we are going out for 27 outs, no matter what. We’ve lost a couple of important games for us but there’s nothing we can do about it now,” he said.
Pham’s two-run homer extended the Cardinals’ lead to 11-6.
“You can’t say it’s a back-breaker because anything is possible. But when you give it right back, it’s tough on your club,” Marlins manager Don Mattingly said.
Suzuki threw out Wong at home in the fourth inning after making a running catch near the left-field line and throwing a 240-foot strike at the plate for the double play.
“We all know Ichiro is definitely someone who can hit, but you know he has a pretty good arm, too, and I knew it was going to be tough,” Wong said.
Prado went 2 for 4 and is hitting .485 (16 for 33) with two home runs and nine RBIs over his last nine games to raise his average to .327.
“Martin has been locked in all year but now all of a sudden, he’s kind of showing some power,” Mattingly said. “It kind of changes his dimension.”
Marlins: 1B Justin Bour (right ankle) was scheduled to begin a rehab stint with Triple-A New Orleans with hopes of joining the big league club on Monday in Chicago in a series against the Cubs.
Cardinals: RHP Jaime Garcia (7-7, 3.97) will take the mound Saturday. He is coming off two back-to-back productive starts, allowing three earned runs over 10 2-3 innings.
Marlins: RHP Colin Rea (5-5, 4.98) will make his Miami debut on Saturday. Rea is 0-2 with a 6.00 ERA in three career starts against the Cardinals.
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