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Everyone, myself included, was whipped into a frenzy after the Pirates' dramatic opening-day victory at St. Louis. A day passed, another game has been played, and reality officially set in with last night's final: Cardinals 9, Pirates 3. So much for the undefeated season.

The Cardinals scored in each of the first five innings, chasing Ian Snell after four awful frames in which he surrendered eight runs. Snell allowed a third-inning home run to Albert Pujols, who continues to dominate the Bucco righthander, along with a first-inning blast by Chris Duncan and seven other hits in his brief outing. It was not encouraging.

Meanwhile, 3B Andy LaRoche dropped a Pujols pop-up, giving him three errors in two games to compliment his .000 batting average. I know it's early, but still...ugh. I guess the end of his 2008 season is still too fresh in my mind.

The top of the lineup (Nyjer Morgan and Freddy Sanchez) accounted for three of the team's five hits, but that wasn't nearly enough on this night. The teams are back at it again tonight when Zach Duke (5-14, 4.82 in 2008) matches up with Todd Wellemeyer (13-9, 3.71). Gametime is set for 8:15 PM EST. The series wraps up with a Thursday afternoon meeting at 1:40 PM between Ross Ohlendorf and Chris Carpenter.

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