CINCINNATI — Albert Pujols hit his club-record fourth grand slam of the season, and Jarrett Hoffpauir drove in the go-ahead runs in the ninth inning with his first career hit as the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Cincinnati Reds 7-4 on Friday night.
Hoffpauir, playing his first major-league game after being called up Wednesday from Triple-A Memphis, capitalized on shortstop Paul Janish's two-out error with a bases-loaded single off Daniel Ray Herrera (1-4) to snap a 4-4 tie.
The win gave the Cardinals sole possession of first place in the NL Central, a game ahead of Milwaukee.
Pujols gave the Cardinals a 4-3 lead in the eighth with his 10th career slam, also a team record, but the Reds tied it on Ramon Hernandez's sacrifice fly in the bottom of the inning.
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Pujols, who leads the majors with 31 home runs and 82 RBI, added an RBI double in the ninth.
Jason Motte (3-2) got two outs in the eighth for the win. Ryan Franklin allowed a hit and a two walks in the ninth before striking out Brandon Phillips for his 20th save in 21 opportunities.
The Cardinals were losing 3-0 and had the bases loaded with one out when right-hander David Weathers was brought in to face Pujols, who took a strike and two balls and popped one foul that fell just out of the reach of first baseman Joey Votto.
Pujols hit the next pitch into the left-center field seats, snapping ties with Hall of Famer Stan Musial for the Cardinals single-season and career records.
Reds relievers hadn't allowed a run in 162⁄3 innings over five games before Pujols' homer.
The home run wasted a solid pitching effort by Homer Bailey, who allowed three hits and two runs in a career-high 71⁄3 innings. Bailey also had five strikeouts while issuing just two walks after allowing a career-high seven last Saturday at Cleveland.
Joel Pineiro, who went 1-4 in June while the Cardinals scored a total of 11 runs in his five starts, allowed eight hits and three runs with one strikeout in seven innings. He didn't walk a batter.
Reds activate Encarnación
The Reds activated third baseman Edwin Encarnación from the 60-day disabled list Friday to replace Danny Richar, who went on the 15-day disabled list with a torn labrum in his left shoulder.
Wilkin Castillo, who had surgery Wednesday to repair a torn labrum in his left shoulder, was moved from the 15-day DL to the 60-day to make room for Encarnación on the 40-man roster.
Encarnación had been on the DL since April 28 with a chip fracture in his left wrist. He didn't start, but entered in a double switch in the ninth and doubled.