Barton continues hot hitting
Mortensen struggles in spot start; late rally not enough
BRAVES 12, CARDINALS 5
at Lake Buena Vista, Fla.
Sunday, March 9
Cardinals at the plate: Brian Barton tightened up the game in the seventh by rifling a two-run triple up the right-center alley, then scoring on Tyler Yates' wild pitch, cutting Atlanta's lead to 8-5. Juan Gonzalez, pinch-hitting in the fourth, was robbed of a hit when third baseman Chipper Jones dove into the hole to snare his liner; Gonzo is 6-for-22 (.273) during his comeback attempt.Braves at the plate: Scott Thorman drove in four runs, three on his first homer of the spring, off Jason Isringhausen in the third. Corky Miller got his first hit in 10 at-bats, a fifth-inning RBI single. Matt Diaz went 2-for-3, scoring three times. Josh Anderson drilled a two-run double in the eighth. Cardinals on the mound: Replacement starter (for scratched Anthony Reyes) Clayton Mortensen endured a tough first inning (two walks, three hits, three runs) before working a perfect second. Braves on the mound: Tim Hudson became the first Atlanta pitcher to stretch out to four innings and had an easy time of it; he had to make only 11 pitches in the fourth, even with a leadoff walk of Colby Rasmus. Dan Smith pitched out of a jam in the seventh, replacing Yates with men on second and third and two outs to strike out Rasmus. Grapefruit League records: Cardinals 5-7; Braves 7-5. Up next: Adam Wainwright will be on the mound for Monday's "Florida Turnpike Series" finale against Atlanta and Jair Jurrjens. Mike Pansi, Russ Springer, Randy Flores and Jason Motte will follow Wainwright to the hill. The Braves complete a Spring Training oddity -- a two-game series -- in a Monday ( 1:05 p.m. ET) rematch at Champion Stadium against the Cardinals. Jurrjens, the Braves' most impressive starter thus far (1.80 ERA in five innings), takes the hill for the third time.
Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.