Snell Earns Rare Win As Pirates End Skid

The Associated Press
Monday, September 3, 2007; 5:08 PM

ST. LOUIS -- Ian Snell threw seven scoreless innings to win for only the second time in 11 starts and the Pittsburgh Pirates ended a five-game losing streak, routing Kip Wells and the St. Louis Cardinals 11-0 on Monday.

Jack Wilson matched a career high with four hits, including a two-run home run, and had three RBIs as the Pirates emerged from a skid in which they were outscored 35-13. Ronny Paulino and Freddy Sanchez both went 3-for-4 with two RBIs.

The Cardinals, coming off a three-game sweep over the Reds, entered the day two games back of the Cubs in the NL Central.

The Pirates had 15 hits in 25 at-bats when reliever Andy Cavazos was chased in a five-run fifth that made it 11-0. They scored in each of the first five innings.

Cardinals pitchers gave up a double-digit run total for the 17th time this season, five of them in games started by Wells (6-16), and dropped back to .500. Wells and Jose Contreras of the White Sox are tied for the major league lead in losses.

A good portion of a sellout crowd cheered when manager Tony La Russa emerged from the dugout to yank Wells, who lasted 3 1-3 innings and gave up six runs and 10 hits. Wells was booed heavily as he left the field.

Wells entered 2-0 with an 0.75 ERA against his former team, beating them on May 23 to snap a personal worst seven-game losing streak. Wells was bumped from the rotation in mid-June after going 2-11 with a 6.93 ERA and lately he's been struggling again, going 0-3 with a 10.80 in his last three starts.

Snell (9-11) allowed five hits and a season-high five walks in seven scoreless innings, striking out four and stranding the bases loaded in the fifth. He had been 1-6 with a 6.63 ERA in his previous 10 starts, and allowed a season-worst seven runs in 5 1-3 innings in his last outing.

Juan Perez and Romulo Sanchez finished up the six-hitter.

The Pirates' Xavier Nady left the game because of a bruise above the left ear after he was beaned by Cavazos in the fifth. The team said he did not sustain a concussion, and that he was day to day.

Rick Ankiel, who was 6-for-12 with two homers and nine RBIs in the three-game sweep over the Reds, was 0-for-2 with two walks, a popup and a strikeout.

Notes:@ Russell Branyan, acquired from the Phillies on Friday, finally made his St. Louis debut with a pinch-hit single in the fifth. He finished the game at third base, and struck out in the seventh. ... Bautista has 14 homers, four of them coming in the last 10 games. He eluded a tag at the plate by sneaking in his hand on a hook slide on a double by Sanchez in the third for a 4-0 lead. ... Wilson has 11 career four-hit games, one this year.

© 2007 The Associated Press