The Arizona Diamondbacks' best pitcher had a rough night on the mound Tuesday against one of the National League's best squads, the St. Louis Cardinals -- but still won. Go figure.
In the end, Dan Haren had one of the oddest pitching lines you'll ever see for a guy with a "W" beside his name: six innings, seven earned runs, two walks, eight strikeouts, and three homers. Oh, yeah, if that's not strange enough, when the ace picked up a bat, he went 4-for-4 with an RBI.
Final score: D-Backs 9, Cardinals 7. The win snapped a five-game losing streak for the D-Backs.
Credit manager A.J. Hinch for sticking with his ace as the D-Backs' offense (despite leaving 13 runners on base for the game) continued to battle back against the Cardinals' Kyle Lohse. The D-Backs and Cards traded body-blows in the game's early innings, with the D-Backs finding themselves trailing three times -- 2-0, 4-2, and 7-5 -- but scored in every inning the Cards scored.
In the fourth, down 7-5, it was slugger Mark Reynolds who put the D-Backs on top for good with a three-run homer. It was Reynolds' fifth of the year.
Haren then dialed up two scoreless innings before turning the game over to the bullpen, a corps that is the number-one reason the D-Backs have eight losses on the year. But on Tuesday, Juan Gutierrez and Chad Qualls were lights-out, giving up no hits and striking out four Cardinals in three innings.
Tonight, the D-Backs will try to win the rubber game of the series as they send Edwin Jackson (1-1, 3.50 ERA) to the mound against the Cardinals' ace, Chris Carpenter (2-0, 3.50). First pitch is at 6:40 p.m. at Chase Field. TV: Fox Sports Arizona. Radio: KTAR 620 AM. More info: www.dbacks.com