ST. LOUIS – Albert Pujols homered and drove in four runs his first two at-bats against longtime nemesis Wandy Rodriguez and Adam Wainwright worked eight scoreless innings Monday as St. Louis beat Houston 5-0 in its home opener, dropping the Astros to 0-7.

New batting coach Mark McGwire drew one of the biggest cheers during the pregame introductions before his first home game since retiring after the 2001 season. The crowd of 46,918 was the largest for a regular-season game at the 5-year-old ballpark.

Pujols hit an RBI single and a three-run homer and Ryan Ludwick went 4 for 4. Wainwright (2-0) allowed six hits and one walk, struck out seven and got his first career pickoff.

The Astros are off to their worst start since opening 0-9 in 1983.


PADRES 17, BRAVES 2: Will Venable’s two-run homer highlighted a 10-run fourth inning, and Kyle Blanks homered, doubled and drove in a career-high five runs as San Diego routed Atlanta in its home opener.

The Padres’ 17 runs were the most by any team at Petco Park since it opened in 2004.


PHILLIES 7, NATIONALS 4: Placido Polanco hit a go-ahead single, Chase Utley had a two-run homer and Philadelphia overcame an early deficit to beat Washington in its home opener.

Cole Hamels (2-0) earned the win despite giving up four runs in 52/3 innings.


CUBS 9, BREWERS 5: Xavier Nady, Jeff Baker and Aramis Ramirez homered as Chicago put on a power display for new owner Tom Ricketts and beat Milwaukee in its home opener.

Ryan Dempster (1-0) ran his career record against the Brewers to 12-3 despite allowing five runs in 61/3 innings.


REDS 6, MARLINS 5: Scott Rolen homered twice and drove in the go-ahead run in the 10th inning, lifting Cincinnati to a win at Miami.

The Marlins twice erased deficits but left the bases loaded in the bottom of the ninth and went down in order in the 10th against Francisco Cordero, who earned his third save in three chances.


RANGERS 4, INDIANS 2: Nelson Cruz hit his fifth home run of the season, connecting in the 10th as Texas spoiled Cleveland’s home opener.

Cruz’s two-run drive came with one out against Jamey Wright (0-1). Cruz leads the AL in home runs.

Frank Francisco (2-2), who lost his job as the Rangers’ closer, pitched a perfect ninth. Neftali Feliz, Francisco’s temporary replacement, earned his third career save.

Shin-Soo Choo homered for the Indians, who have lost four in a row.


ROYALS 10, TIGERS 5: Jose Guillen hit a two-run homer after his two-out foul popup was dropped by Detroit first baseman Miguel Cabrera, and visiting Kansas City ended the Tigers’ four-game winning streak.

Guillen took advantage of Cabrera’s error for a go-ahead homer in the fourth inning.

Scott Podsednik had four hits, including a two-run single in the sixth that helped the Royals pull away.

Luke Hochevar (1-0) won despite allowing five runs in five-plus innings.


ATHLETICS 4, MARINERS 0: Justin Duchscherer was terrific in his second start in 20 months, pitching into the eighth inning to help Oakland ruin Seattle’s home opener.

Cliff Pennington homered and Gabe Gross had a two-run single for Oakland.

Duchscherer (1-0) allowed two hits and walked two in 71/3 innings. The right-hander, a two-time All-Star, missed last season because of an elbow injury and was later treated for clinical depression.


RAYS 5, ORIOLES 1: Matt Garza allowed one run in eight innings, and Carl Crawford went 4 for 4 with a home run for visiting Tampa Bay.

The game drew 9,129 fans, the smallest crowd in the 19-year history of Camden Yards.

Reid Brignac also homered for the Rays in their first road game of the season.

Felix Pie connected for the Orioles, who fell to 1-6 with their fourth straight loss.


WHITE SOX 8, BLUE JAYS 7: Mark Teahen tied the game with a ninth-inning homer and tripled home the go-ahead run in the 11th inning as visiting Chicago snapped Toronto’s five-game winning streak.

Mark Kotsay led off the 11th with a pinch-hit single off Jeremy Accardo (0-1) and was replaced by pinch runner Omar Vizquel. Teahen followed with a triple to right center.


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