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8th pile! Cards rally late to clobber Cubs

MLB.com

CHICAGO -- The Cardinals stunned the red-hot Cubs, scoring a season-high nine runs in the eighth inning to post an 11-4 come-from-behind victory on Friday afternoon to snap Chicago's winning streak at six.

"That was a weird, weird inning," Cubs reliever Hector Rondon said. "That's the first time I've seen something like that -- nine runs with nobody out."

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CHICAGO -- The Cardinals stunned the red-hot Cubs, scoring a season-high nine runs in the eighth inning to post an 11-4 come-from-behind victory on Friday afternoon to snap Chicago's winning streak at six.

"That was a weird, weird inning," Cubs reliever Hector Rondon said. "That's the first time I've seen something like that -- nine runs with nobody out."

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St. Louis sent 14 batters to the plate in the eighth. Trailing 3-2, the Cardinals loaded the bases against Carl Edwards Jr. when Matt Carpenter doubled and both Tommy Pham and Dexter Fowler walked. Rondon took over and walked Jedd Gyorko to force in a run and tie the game, then served up a two-run double to Paul DeJong as the Cards opened a 5-3 lead. DeJong was 0-for-15 before his hit.

"I think that really made a statement for us," DeJong said. "I knew he was bringing it and that he was going to attack me early, because there's nowhere he can put me. I was just trying to get a good pitch to hit and when I got down, 0-2, I was still looking for a fastball because he was trying to elevate."

Video: STL@CHC: Fowler laces an RBI double to tie the game

Randal Grichuk, who hit a solo homer in the second, added an RBI single to chase Rondon. Carson Kelly then notched his first big league hit this season, a two-run double off Justin Grimm. Carpenter and Pham each added RBI singles. All of the runs came with no outs.

According to the Elias Sports Bureau, it was the first time since Aug. 6, 2007, that the Cardinals produced an inning in which each of the first nine batters scored.

"That was incredible," Grichuk said. "Obviously, [we had] timely hits, and I felt like they fell apart and couldn't throw strikes. That clearly opened the door for us, and we capitalized."

Cubs manager Joe Maddon called the inning "awkward." He didn't have many options.

"You can't open another can of pitchers," Maddon said. "When you get behind like that, there's tomorrow to be concerned with and also Sunday."

Video: STL@CHC: Maddon talks bullpen's meltdown in loss

The Cardinals won for the fourth time in eight games in the second half, and the fourth time in 10 meetings with the Cubs.

Chicago opened a 2-0 lead in the first on Willson Contreras' two-run homer, and Anthony Rizzo added a tiebreaking RBI single in the fifth. Jake Arrieta gave up five hits over six innings. Since the All-Star break, Cubs starting pitchers have compiled a 2.14 ERA.

Video: CHC@STL: Rizzo's RBI single down the right-field line

"Stick around this game long enough, you see some crazy things happen," Arrieta said. "It's a tough one. Give them a little credit. It's not easy to bat through the order against a couple arms like that without recording an out. Give the Cardinals some credit there."

St. Louis starter Carlos Martinez notched his 600th career strikeout when he fanned Rizzo in the first, but he did not get the win. Matt Bowman picked up the win in relief after Zach Duke, making his first appearance since undergoing Tommy John surgery in October 2016, retired the first two batters in the seventh.

Video: STL@CHC: Martinez records his 600th career strikeout

MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Contreras stays hot: Even after an off-day, Contreras didn't cool down. With one out in the Chicago first, Ben Zobrist singled and swiped second, his first steal of the season. One out later, Contreras launched his 14th homer off a 2-2 pitch from Martinez into the left-field bleachers. Contreras now is 10-for-27 with three home runs and nine RBIs since the All-Star break. According to Statcast™, Contreras' homer had an exit velocity of 103 mph and traveled 368 feet. Contreras is the second Cubs player to reach 50 RBIs this season, joining Rizzo.

Welcome back: Grichuk was activated from the disabled list prior to Friday's game, and he looked healthy with two outs in the second when he hit his 10th home run, a solo shot, into the left-field bleachers.

Video: CHC@STL: Grichuk launches a solo home run

However, Yadier Molina was a late scratch because of soreness in his right ankle. Kelly, the top catching prospect as ranked by MLBPipeline.com, was called up and started in Molina's place. He went 1-for-4 with a two-run double in the eighth.

Kelly, Grichuk, Duke make strong showings

QUOTABLE
"I don't think we've gotten too high or too low, even through some slumps where we weren't very happy about the way we were playing. I think we've maintained an even keel and stayed focused. While there has been some frustration, that's just the nature of not playing up to your potential and knowing you're better than you're playing. Having said that, we are positive, and we'll remain to be so throughout this stretch of games we have coming up. We're looking forward to playing good baseball." -- Arrieta

Video: STL@CHC: Arrieta strikes out six over six innings

"I think everybody needed a little bit of something, and that eighth inning provided a whole lot of wind in everybody's sail." -- Cardinals manager Mike Matheny, on how his team responded after a walk-off loss on Thursday

Video: STL@CHC: Matheny on late-inning outburst in 11-4 win

SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
The Cardinals' nine-run eighth inning marked the third time in the Cubs' past five home games they've given up at least seven runs in one inning. The Brewers scored seven runs in the third on July 6 and the Pirates scored 10 in the first on July 9 against the Cubs.

MEDICAL REPORT
Reserve outfielder Jose Martinez underwent a battery of concussion tests on Friday after an eighth-inning foul ball off Carpenter's bat struck him around the left temple. The initial tests came back negative, and Martinez will be re-examined on Saturday to determine his availability for the rest of the series.

WHAT'S NEXT
Cardinals: Adam Wainwright will carry a personal four-game winning streak into his start against the Cubs on Saturday at 3:05 p.m. CT on MLB.TV. He has 14 career wins against the Cubs, including 10 in 22 games (17 starts) at Wrigley Field.

Cubs: Jon Lester hit a double, stole a base and picked up the win in his last start against the Braves. What will he do for an encore? Lester starts in the second game of this three-game series on Saturday on MLB.TV.

Watch every out-of-market regular-season game live on MLB.TV.

Carrie Muskat has covered the Cubs since 1987, and for MLB.com since 2001. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat and listen to her podcast.

Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter, and Facebook.

Jake Arrieta, Willson Contreras, Dexter Fowler, Randal Grichuk, Carlos Martinez, Anthony Rizzo