Gibson goes five strong innings

Gibson goes five strong innings

JUPITER, Fla. -- Randal Grichuk hit a walk-off RBI single in the bottom of the ninth to score Tommy Pham as the Cardinals defeated the Twins, 2-1, Thursday at Roger Dean Stadium.

The Cardinals loaded the bases off Twins' reliever Drew Rucinski, who recorded two outs before Grichuk came up. Rucinski also walked two to complicate the inning.

Twins starter Kyle Gibson held the Cardinals hitless until Jedd Gyorko connected for a solo homer with two outs in the fourth. It was Gyorko's second homer this spring.

"It was a 2-1 sinker right down the middle," Gibson said. "A good hitter did a good job."

Gyorko's solo home run

Gibson was otherwise terrific, finishing five innings and not allowing another hit. In 17 1/3 spring innings, Gibson has allowed four earned runs on 15 hits.

"I felt good," he said. "Everything is getting a little bit more consistent. That's the thing I've been looking for the last couple of years; consistency, getting ahead of guys, consistency with breaking pitches getting them in the zone."

The Twins tied the game up in the sixth on an RBI single by Tommy Field.

Field's RBI single

Trevor Rosenthal, making his first start since 2012, threw two scoreless innings for the Cardinals. He scattered two hits, walked two and struck out two over the 38-pitch effort. The outing followed a 12-day layoff in which Rosenthal dealt with tightness around his right lat.

"[I] definitely wanted to throw everything," Rosenthal said afterward. "I felt like I was kind of back at ground zero from where I was to start the camp. Obviously, you want to leave healthy, but at the same time work on commanding the strike zone."

Cardinals closer Seung Hwan Oh made his first appearance since returning from the World Baseball Classic. He worked around a two-out single to finish a scoreless inning.

Twins Up Next: Right-hander Phil Hughes gets the start when the Twins visit Tampa Bay at 1:05 p.m. ET Friday. Also scheduled to throw for the Twins are lefties Taylor Rogers and Buddy Boshers, along with right-hander Alex Wimmers.

Cardinals Up Next: First baseman Matt Carpenter will return to the lineup on Friday and be cleared to swing the bat for the first time since March 1. Adam Wainwright will start that game for St. Louis, which will travel to Port St. Lucie to face the Mets (12:05 p.m. CT). The game can be seen on MLB.TV.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Read her blog, follow her on Twitter, like her Facebook page and listen to her podcast.

Glenn Sattell is a contributor to This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.