Promising start doesn't hold for DR

First-inning lead evaporates quickly against Cards in loss

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CARDINALS 4, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC 1
at Jupiter, Fla.
Thursday, March 5

Dominican Republic at the plate: Jose Reyes led off the game with a double and came home to score. Robinson Cano singled twice and drove in a run. Miguel Tejada and Juan Brito each had a single.

Cardinals at the plate: Skip Schumaker singled twice and walked. Khalil Greene's RBI double tied the score in the fourth, and Joe Mather's RBI fielder's choice gave St. Louis a lead it would not relinquish.

Dominican Republic on the mound: Starter Ubaldo Jimenez was excellent, pitching three shutout innings with two hits, a walk and four strikeouts. Carlos Marmol was touched for a game-tying run in one inning, and Tony Pena took the loss by allowing two runs in the fifth. Cardinals pitcher Fernando Salas, on loan to the Dominican club, tossed a perfect inning with a strikeout.

Cardinals on the mound: Starter Todd Wellemeyer was very solid, allowing a run on four hits over four innings. Ryan Franklin breezed through two perfect innings, and Chris Perez, Josh Kinney and Jason Motte each tossed a scoreless frame.

Grapefruit League records: Dominican Republic 1-2; Cardinals 5-2-1

Up next: The Dominican Republic begins World Baseball Classic play on Saturday against the Netherlands in San Juan. Edinson Volquez will pitch against Sidney Ponson at 11 a.m. ET.

The Cardinals host the Mets at Roger Dean Stadium on Friday, with a start time of 1:05 p.m. ET. Chris Carpenter, coming off an outstanding debut, makes his second start of the spring against Mets prospect Jonathan Niese.

Matthew Leach is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.