Valencia's late homer sinks Cardinals

Valencia's late homer sinks Cardinals

TWINS 7, CARDINALS 6
at Fort Myers, Fla.
Tuesday, March 9

Cardinals at the plate: Colby Rasmus hit a two-run homer as part of a three-run fifth that gave St. Louis a two-run lead. Skip Schumaker had a pair of hits, a run scored and an RBI from the leadoff spot.

Twins at the plate: Third-base prospect Danny Valencia hit a solo homer over the left-field wall with two outs in the bottom of the eighth to break a tie. Justin Morneau doubled in a pair in the first inning off Cards starter Adam Wainwright. Morneau now has six RBIs this spring.

Cardinals on the mound: Wainwright's spring debut wasn't successful in terms of numbers. The righty gave up four earned runs on five hits, walking two and striking out none in two innings. Fernando Salas came in behind Wainwright and was perfect through two frames, striking out three.

Twins on the mound: In his second spring start, Carl Pavano gave up three runs on six hits over three innings. He struck out three and walked none. Relievers Jesse Crain and Anthony Slama each put up perfect frames, with Slama striking out two.

2010 Spring Training - null
Sights & Sounds
Spring Training Info

Worth noting: It wasn't the prettiest game in the world, with three errors (two by Nick Punto), but Denard Span made a pair of sparkling diving catches in center. ... The crowd of 8,220 was the third sellout for the Twins this spring (in three home games) and the largest Spring Training crowd in Hammond Stadium's history, surpassing the 8,207 who came to see the Twins play the Phillies on March 21, 2008.

Grapefruit League records: Cardinals 1-5; Twins 4-3

Up next: The Cardinals hope that Albert Pujols can return to the lineup on Wednesday at 12:05 p.m. CT, when they return home from Florida's west coast. Pujols has missed two games with a sore back, but the club has not ruled out that he might be back against Washington. Brad Penny takes the mound against Nats right-hander Garrett Mock.

The Twins get to catch their breath with an off-day Wednesday, then host the Orioles on Thursday at 6:05 p.m. Francisco Liriano, who gave up one hit over two scoreless innings in his 2010 debut, makes his second start of the Grapefruit League season. He'll face new Baltimore righty Kevin Millwood.

Jonathan Mayo is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.