ARLINGTON, Texas— Albert Pujols tied a major-league record, blasting three home runs as the St. Louis Cardinals clobbered the Texas Rangers 16-7 to take a 2-1 lead Saturday in the best-of-seven World Series at Rangers Ballpark.
The Cardinals erupted for 13 runs between the fourth and seventh innings to bury the Rangers as slugger Pujols broke out of an 0 for 6 World Series slump with five hits, including three homers that drove in six runs.
Only Reggie Jackson and Babe Ruth (twice) have hit three homers in a World Series game.
A blown call by first base umpire Ron Kulpa and a throwing error by first baseman by Mike Napoli led to a four-run fourth that changed the game.
Pujols singled leading off the fourth and Matt Holliday hit a grounder to Elvis Andrus for what should have been a double play. The shortstop tossed to second, but Kinsler’s throw was off line and pulled Napoli off first base.
Playing first base for the first time in the Series, Napoli caught the throw and his glove came down hard on Holliday’s left shoulder, with the runner a step short of the bag, But Kulpa, called him safe, despite an argument from Rangers manager Ron Washington.
Lance Berkman singled, and David Freese’s double down the right-field line gave the Cardinals a 2-0 lead. Molina was intentionally walked and Jon Jay hit a bouncer to Napoli, who had plenty of time to throw home for a forceout. But his throw went over the left-handed batter’s box and past lunging catcher Yorvit Torrealba as two runs scored. Ryan Theriot singled for a 5-0 lead.
Michael Young and Nelson Cruz homered for Texas.
Allen Craig had a first-inning homer for the Cardinals.