CHICAGO -- The Cardinals believed they had a need for a more experienced and established catcher. They had a want to add some prickle to the clubhouse, some "edge," as a few folks around the club said Saturday.
What they got in Game 1 of the A.J. Pierzynski Era might be closer to what they've seeking for awhile -- from so many positions.
Pierzynski had three singles and an RBI to add to Matt Adams' powerful afternoon at Wrigley Field. Adams had four RBIs, including two on a triple, to propel the Cardinals to a 6-3 victory Saturday against the rival Cubs. The game was tied at 2 when the Cardinals unloaded for four runs in the seventh inning. Jon Jay sparked the rally with a single and he scored from third on Matt Carpenter's groundball to snap the tie.
Matt Carpenter and Matt Holliday then scored on Matt Adams' two-run triple off lefty James Russell.
Adams scored on Pierzynski's third hit.
Pierzynski is the first Cardinal to debut with three hits in his first start since Tony Cruz did it in 2011. Holliday also did it in his debut back at Philadelphia in 2009.
The Cardinals sent nine batters to the plate in the seventh inning and forced the Cubs to breeze through two relievers. Trevor Rosenthal pitched the ninth inning for the Cardinals to complete his NL-best 31st save.
As important as the depth his gave the lineup, Pierzynski shepherded second-year starter Shelby Miller through one of his finest games in a month. Back into the rotation after a fortnight away, Miller held the Cubs to three hits in his 5 2/3 innings. It wasn't the six-inning, quality-start gem that the Cardinals have craved from someone other than Adam Wainwright or Lance Lynn. But it was a solid return considering Miller did not walk a batter and would have left with the lead if not for a solo homer from pinch-hitter Nate Schierholz to tie the game.
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