Scores/Schedules Standings
Message board
Weekly lineup

  Saturday, Apr. 22 8:10pm ET
Cardinals have NL record 42 HRs in April

ST. LOUIS (AP) -- After dropping a fly ball, Jeffrey Hammonds hit one nobody could catch.

In his first game back off the disabled list, Hammonds atoned for an error with a go-ahead two-run homer in the seventh inning Saturday night as the Colorado Rockies beat the St. Louis Cardinals 7-6.

Mark McGwire
Big Mac's two-run homer carried some clout, but don't ask him about the Cards' 42 this month.
"I'm the only one with a blemish out there when I botched the ball," Hammonds said. "But I'll take that one in the win column."

Mark McGwire and Fernando Tatis hit two-run homers to give the Cardinals an NL-record 42 homers in April. St. Louis has homered in 14 straight games, three shy of the team record.

"Who cares? Don't even talk about it," McGwire said. "It's stupid. It's a stat that is absolutely meaningless."

Atlanta hit 41 homers in April 1998. The major league mark is 49 by Cleveland in 1997, and the overall record for any month is 58 by Baltimore in May 1987.

"We're going to try to keep going," Tatis said. "We're not looking for home runs every time, it just happens."

Colorado has won five of six this season against the Cardinals, who lead the NL Central. The Rockies have won seven of their last 10.

Hammonds, activated earlier in the day from a hamstring injury suffered on Opening Day, dropped J.D. Drew's drive near the left-field warning track in the second inning. Mike Matheny followed with an RBI single that made it 4-3.

With St. Louis ahead 6-5 in the seventh, Hammonds connected off Mike James (0-1) for his first homer of the season. He also singled and scored in the second and is 4-for-8 on the season.

Rick Croushore (2-0) worked 1 2/3 scoreless innings and Jose Jimenez got three outs for his third save, striking out Ray Lankford with a runner on second for the final out. Both pitchers were with the Cardinals last season, and both of Croushore's victories have been against St. Louis.

McGwire hit his fourth home run, his first since April 10, off Masato Yoshii in the first. The two-run drive landed just inside the foul pole in left and was estimated at 446 feet.

Tatis hit his fifth with two outs in the third, although it took the umpires some time to award it. Replays showed the ball cleared the left-field wall by several feet before it bounced back on the field. Third-base ump Marty Foster signaled the ball was in play, plate umpire Ron Kulpa overruled the call.

"It's something that's always going to happen in baseball," Tatis said. "I'm very happy they called it a home run."

Rockies manager Buddy Bell was ejected for arguing the call.

"I shouldn't have been thrown out of the game," Bell said. "I just wanted an explanation, and I did not get one."

Cardinals starter Garrett Stephenson allowed five runs -- four earned -- and eight hits in six innings. Yoshii had a pair of RBI singles off him and is 5-for-10 with five RBI -- matching his total in 1998 and '99 combined.

"Yes, I'm kind of surprised," Yoshii said through an interpreter. "But I have to say I was kind of lucky."

On the mound, he allowed six runs -- five earned -- and five hits in five innings.

Game notes
The Cardinals have outscored their opponents 34-14 in the first inning. ... The homers were the first allowed this season by Yoshii in 23 2/3 innings. ... Cardinals rookie pitcher Rick Ankiel was headed to the plate for a pinch-hit appearance in the sixth when manager Tony La Russa called him back and used Jim Edmonds. Edmonds, who missed his first start due to a foot injury, looked awkward striking out. ... The Cardinals are 11-0 when they don't commit an error and 0-7 when they do. On Saturday, Lankford had an error in left.


Baseball Scoreboard

Colorado Clubhouse

St. Louis Clubhouse

Toronto 8
NY Yankees 2

Chi. White Sox 14
Detroit 6

Cleveland 0
Boston 0

Baltimore 4
Oakland 3

Seattle 4
Kansas City 2

Tampa Bay 11
Anaheim 9

Texas 8
Minnesota 3

NY Mets 7
Chicago Cubs 6

(2nd game)

NY Mets 8
Chicago Cubs 3

Los Angeles 16
Cincinnati 2

San Diego 8
Houston 6

San Francisco 8
Arizona 6

Florida 4
Philadelphia 2

Milwaukee 7
Montreal 3

Atlanta 4
Pittsburgh 2

Colorado 7
St. Louis 6