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Pujols, Westbrook Lead Cards Past Mets
NEW YORK (AP) -- Albert Pujols hit a two-run homer in the first and Jake Westbrook had the Mets pounding the ball into the ground over eight excellent innings as the St. Louis Cardinals beat New York 6-2 Thursday to avoid a three-game sweep.

Pujols drove a pitch from Jonathon Niese (9-8) left up in the strike zone off the facade of the second deck for his 21st home run of the season and a 2-0 lead.

On a sweltering day at Citi Field, with the temperature already at 90 when the first pitch was thrown at 12:13 p.m., Westbrook (8-4) worked efficiently (90 pitches) and rapidly, and kept his infielders busy. He recorded 17 outs on groundballs, including two double plays, and allowed only four hits and two runs. He walked one and struck out three, leading the Cardinals to only their second win since the All-Star break in a tidy 2 hours, 7 minutes.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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