Cardinals score twice in 7th, now up 8-1 in 8th

Time is growing short for the San Francisco Giants. Not just in Game 4 of the National League Championship Series. In the National League Championship Series, period.

In the top of the seventh, St. Louis Cardinals starter Adam Wainwright retired the Giants in order; since Hunter Pence's solo homer in the second inning, San Francisco's gotten only three runners aboard and all three were stranded. With Wainwright having thrown 96 pitches, he's finally coming out of the game. But with closer Jason Motte looming in the ninth, the Giants are now walking a fine line between hanging around in this game and being out of it.

In the bottom of the seventh, with Guillermo Mota back on the mound and the Giants down 6-1, Allen Craig led off with a grounder down the third-base line. Pablo Sandoval made an incredible diving stop, but his throw to first base was low and off target, giving Craig his first hit in this series. Yadier Molina followed with another screamer down the line, and this time past the pouncing Panda. Craig scored easily when left fielder Gregor Blanco had some issues, and Molina had his first extra-base hit in this postseason.

Molina did strike out David Frees, who gave way to Jeremy Affeldt, who retired Daniel Descalso before giving up an RBI single to Pete Kozma. Affeldt did strike out pinch-hitter Shane Robinson to finally stop the bleeding. But the Cardinals now lead 8-1, and the Giants are on life support. In this game, and in this series.

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