Furcal, Cards spoil Ramirez's debut in walkoff

BY foxsports • July 25, 2012

ST. LOUIS (AP) -- The Cardinals look for leadoff man Rafael Furcal to get on base. He's also done a pretty good job of driving in runs from the top of the order.

Furcal came through again Wednesday night, as his two-out, RBI single off Jamey Wright in the 12th innings gave the St. Louis Cardinals a 3-2 win over the Los Angeles Dodgers. The RBI was No. 42 for Furcal, tops in the National League for leadoff hitters.

"It was something right there middle in," Furcal said of his game-winning hit. "I tried to get good contact."

Lance Berkman, who left the lineup a day earlier with a bruised right knee after being hit by a pitch, drew a one-out walk as a pinch-hitter in the 12th from Wright (4-3). Matt Carpenter singled with two outs and Furcal drove home pinch-runner Joe Kelly .

Kelly made things more difficult by falling down on Carpenter's hit, forcing him to go back to second base. He was able to score without a play when Tony Gwynn, Jr., bobbled the ball in left field.

"I saw the hit and I knew the outfielder was kind of deep," Kelly said. "I didn't take a good round and lost my footing. When I saw (Furcal's) base hit, I just wanted to make sure to touch third."

Fernando Salas (1-3) pitched two scoreless innings to pick up his first victory since July 9, 2011, against Arizona.

Cardinals starter Kyle Lohse went seven innings and allowed two runs and seven hits with no walks and four strikeouts. He drove in a run with a sacrifice fly.

"Salas did a terrific job," St. Louis manager Mike Matheny said. "You can't ask for anything more than that."

The loss spoiled the otherwise successful Dodgers debut of Hanley Ramirez. Acquired in a trade earlier Wednesday with the Miami Marlins, Ramirez tripled on the first pitch he saw with his new team. The three-time All-Star infielder went 2-for-4 with a walk. He scored once and hit an RBI single in sixth that made it 2-all.

"I feel comfortable," Ramirez said. "Great group of guys here; you just go out there and have fun. I'm happy to be here."

Aaron Harang was sharp for the Dodgers, giving up just two hits and two runs in 7 1-3 innings.

Ramirez helped the Dodgers to a 1-0 lead in the second when he tripled off the wall in center and scored on James Loney `s sacrifice fly.

After St. Louis grabbed a 2-1 lead on Lohse's sacrifice fly in the fifth, Ramirez tied it with a two-out single in the sixth.

Ramirez played third base, the spot he moved to with the Marlins to make room for new shortstop Jose Reyes .Dodgers manager Don Mattingly said he plans to put Ramirez at shortstop when the former NL batting champion is comfortable with the switch back to his old position.

Mattingly was ejected by home plate umpire Jeff Kellogg for arguing balls and strikes while on the mound during a 10th-inning pitching change. The ejection was the fifth this season for Mattingly.

NOTES: 3B David Freese had two hits for St. Louis. He is batting .565 (13-for-23) during an eight-game hitting streak. ... Dodgers starter Chris Capuano (10-5) can match his win total for 2011 with a victory Thursday. He'll have to reverse some history - he is winless in five career games at Busch Stadium (0-3, 7.04 ERA). ... Lohse's quality start was the 20th in a row for the Cardinals.

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