A change in his delivery solved the problem, and the rookie
lasted six innings Wednesday night to help the Florida Marlins beat
St. Louis 8-5.
The Marlins have been concerned about Beckett tipping his
pitches with mannerisms in his motion, and manager Jeff Torborg's
suspicions were raised again when the right-hander gave up three
runs and four hits in the second inning.
"I might be wrong, but I thought I saw something, so I wanted
to change something,'' Torborg said. "We worked on it on the
After giving up three runs and loading the bases with one out in
the second, Beckett (4-4) retired 10 in a row. He departed after
allowing seven hits and five runs, including Jim Edmonds' 22nd
Cardinals manager Tony La Russa said Beckett wasn't telegraphing
"There's an art to stealing them, and it's a common problem
with young pitchers, but we didn't have anything on Beckett,'' La
Russa said. "I respect Jeff Torborg, so I would tell him the
truth. I'll talk to him Thursday.''
Beckett said doubted he was tipping his pitches. He believes he
throws his fastball and curve with the same motion
"I don't see any difference,'' he said. "I've looked at the
tapes. I don't look for any excuses. They hit me hard, that's all
there is to it.''
That dropped St. Louis' average to .209 with the bases loaded
"We had two good shots there,'' La Russa said. "We got to
Beckett, just not enough.''
The Marlins, who had been outscored 95-52 in the first inning
this season, bucked the trend by taking a 4-0 lead in the first
against Travis Smith (4-2). That ended Florida's 21-inning
scoreless streak at home.
Braden Looper pitched the ninth for his third save in six
Scott Rolen went 2-for-4, drove in a run and scored once in his
second game for the Cardinals.
"We were never in control of this game, but we still had an
opportunity to win it,'' Rolen said. "That's what you want to
Redmond tied his career high of three RBI with one swing. After
fouling a ball off his knee, he pulled a 2-2 pitch into the corner,
hiking the Marlins' average with the bases loaded to .176.
On Tuesday, Florida loaded the bases in the first and second
inning and failed to score in a 5-0 loss to St. Louis.
Smith lasted just 1 1/3 innings and allowed six runs, raising
his road ERA to 10.09 in nine games. Smith was pitching in place of
Chuck Finley, whose scheduled start was pushed back to Thursday so
he could attend to a personal matter in California.
"Right now I'm battling inconsistency,'' Smith said. "It seems
like every other start I'm killing our bullpen.''
In the first inning Smith hit a batter, gave up an RBI double to
Preston Wilson and walked two to load the bases. Redmond cleared
them with his two-out double.
The Cardinals closed to 4-3 in the second. Rolen singled home
the first run and Eli Marrero hit a bases-loaded sacrifice fly.
Smith drove in another run with a scratch single when his sacrifice
bunt attempt rolled under the glove of Derrek Lee charging from
Florida answered with three in the bottom of the second for a
7-3 lead. Castillo singled home a run to knock out Smith,
Encarnacion greeted Luther Hackman with an RBI triple, and Wilson
singled home another run.
The Cardinals' Garrett Stephenson, recovering from
hamstring surgery, began a rehabilitation assignment Wednesday at
Class A Peoria. He allowed no hits and no runs in 4 2/3 innings.
... The Marlins haven't scored for rookie Michael Tejera in his
past two starts. ... Beckett, who doubled in his major league debut
last season, is 0-for-23 this season. ... Renteria hit .404 in
July. ... Lee is 1-for-19 against the Cardinals this season.