The Associated Press
MILWAUKEE -- The St. Louis Cardinals aren’t counting on one single player to replace Albert Pujols.
And when four different players hit home runs off Yovani Gallardo, it certainly looks like a team-wide approach to making up for Pujols’ departure just might work for the defending champions.
David Freese hit a two-run drive and Yadier Molina, Carlos Beltran and Matt Holliday hit solo shots off Gallardo, helping the Cardinals spoil the Milwaukee Brewers’ opener with an 11-5 victory on Friday.
"That’s where we’re going to have to be able to overcome the loss of Albert, is finding ways to score runs, tack on runs," Holliday said. "You get the big four-spot, but we kept scoring."
Gallardo (0-1) struggled with his control from the start and lasted only 3 2-3 innings, giving up seven hits and six runs with five walks and three strikeouts.
"I think he would tell you he probably didn’t have his best stuff today," Holliday said. "We got his pitch count up and got him in some hitters’ counts. He’ll be good. I just don’t think he had a good day."
Brewers manager Ron Roenicke gave Gallardo the opening-day start ahead of Zack Greinke, despite Gallardo’s career 1-7 record against the Cardinals with a 5.66 ERA coming into Friday’s game.
Holliday wasn’t sure why the Cardinals play so well against one of the two Brewers aces they’ll face in the series.
"I don’t know if that’s one of those things that you can really put a finger on," Holliday said. "I don’t think there’s one particular thing. He’s a great pitcher, so I don’t see why it would be like that."