SAN FRANCISCO -- Adam Wainwright homered in his first major league at-bat and pitched three innings of relief to earn the win in the St. Louis Cardinals' 10-4 victory over the San Francisco Giants yesterday, when Barry Bonds took the day off.
The Cardinals' Albert Pujols singled twice but stayed at 23 home runs.
Slap-hitting outfielder So Taguchi provided the power for St. Louis with a solo homer in the ninth and three RBIs, and Yadier Molina hit a tying RBI single in the sixth and drew a bases-loaded walk the following inning.
Wainwright (2-1) hit the first pitch he saw to left in the fifth for a solo homer. The righthander allowed four hits and two runs, struck out one, and didn't walk a batter.
Cy Young winner Chris Carpenter was scratched before the game by St. Louis with swelling in the right side of his upper back. Righthanded reliever Brad Thompson made a fill-in start for the Cardinals, his first career outing as a starter.
Thompson worked two innings, and Tuesday night's winner, Jason Marquis, pinch hit for him in the third and tripled to start the inning. David Eckstein's RBI single moments later scored Marquis to tie the score at 2.
Tyler Johnson worked the third before Wainwright took over. Randy Flores and Braden Looper each worked an inning to close out the win.
Omar Vizquel had an RBI triple and Mark Sweeney doubled in a run, but the Giants dropped the series after winning their previous two sets.
Bonds had the day off after starting 13 of the last 14 games and five straight. His home fans are still waiting to see his next milestone home run -- 715.
Bonds will resume his pursuit to pass Babe Ruth and move into sole possession of second place on the career home run list tomorrow night against the Colorado Rockies. The slugger is expected to play all three games of the weekend series before the Giants leave town for another week, at Florida and New York.
``No Barry Bonds today to start the game," manager Felipe Alou said before even hearing a question during his pregame session with the media. ``This morning we talked. He'd rather rest."
The Cardinals bounced back from a 9-2 loss in the series opener Monday night to take the final two games and win their sixth straight series.
They tied the game at 4-4 on Molina's single to left in the sixth. The hit followed a throwing error by San Francisco starter Noah Lowry (1-2), who tried to pick off Hector Luna on his attempt to steal second.
Taguchi followed with a go-ahead sacrifice fly to left and also singled in a run as St. Louis batted around in the seventh. Juan Encarnacion had a run-scoring single in the inning for his fifth RBI of the series.
Lowry, who missed time with a strained muscle in his right side and made only his fifth start, allowed 10 hits and three earned runs, struck out one and walked three in six innings.