Cardinals-Reds: Rasmus and Carpenter Construct Monstrous Win

Brian McDowellCorrespondent IJuly 5, 2009

PHOENIX - APRIL 15:  Colby Rasmus #28 of the St. Louis Cardinals waits in the dugout during the game against the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on April 15, 2009 in Phoenix, Arizona. The Cardinals defeated the Diamondbacks 12-7.  (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

Truthfully, Colby Rasmus's two run shot in the first inning was the only offense that was needed to dispose of the Cincinatti Reds today. That fact did not stop the St. Louis Cardinals from erupting in an orgy of offense, burying their National League Central rivals 10-1

The Reds' hitters were shut down by a brilliant performance from the Cardinals' ace, Chris Carpenter. He allowed only one run and five hits and only one walk in his seven innings of work. It was arguably his best performance of the year, and it was gratifying to not only see Carpenter get back on track, but to see him finally get the run support from the struggling offense of his team that he's needed all year.

Obviously, in a large blowout like this one, plenty of St. Louis batters had good days at the plate. Even Carpenter and the awfl Joe Thurston had RBIs in this game; that's what kind of day it was.

Rasmus earnestly continued his campaign to win National League rookie of the year with the second game in a row where he has hit a home-run. It seems clear that, at this point, he should be the cleanup hitter for this team instead of the significantly less productive Ryan Ludwick. Perhaps, the bat of Rasmus could provide Pujols the protection from intentional walks that he needs.

Schumaker continued to demonstrate his fitness to be a lead-off hitter, going three for four and scoring three runs. Newly minted National League All-Star catcher, Yadier Molina, also contributed two hits. His fellow All-Star, Albert Pujols was walked once, and went one for three, scoring both times he was on base. It is always nice to see St. Louis have genuine offensive production without it turning into a one-man Albert Pujols Show.

This triumphant win puts St. Louis back on top of the Central division. After their day off tomorrow, they will directly defend that position, visiting the Milwaukee Brewers for three games. It will be interesting to see how long both Colby Rasmus and this team can continue their hot streak then.