St. Louis Cardinals third baseman Nolan Arenado waves to fans as he is introduced Thursday at Busch Stadium in St. Louis, Mo. Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI | License Photo
April 9 (UPI) -- Off-season acquisition Nolan Arenado knew his first game with the St. Louis Cardinals would be special. The veteran third baseman made it more memorable with a game-winning home run against the Milwaukee Brewers.
The perennial All-Star smashed the two-run shot in the bottom of the eighth inning in the 3-1 win over the Milwaukee Brewers on Thursday at Busch Stadium in St. Louis, Mo.
"No comparisons," Arenado told reporters. "This was one of the greatest moments [of my career]."
The Brewers and Cardinals were tied at 1-1 through seven innings. Milwaukee began the frame with Travis Shaw, Jackie Bradley Jr. and Lorenzo Cain going out in order.
Tommy Edman struck out in the first Cardinals at-bat in the bottom half of the inning. Brewers relief pitcher Drew Rasmussen then walked Cardinals outfielder Austin Dean.
Arenado then stepped to the plate as the third hitter of the half-inning. Rasmussen threw in a 96.6-mph fastball.
Arenado crushed the pitch to left field for a 373-foot homer. The two-run shot traveled 96-mph and left the field in 5.2 seconds, according to Statcast.
Cardinals relief pitcher Alex Reyes then retired the final Brewers hitters in the top of the ninth inning to earn his third save of the season.
Arenado went 1 for 4 with two RBIs, a run scored and a strikeout in the win. He is now hitting .345 with two home runs and five RBIs this season.
Shaw went 3 for 4 for the Brewers. Cardinals starter Adam Wainwright allowed five hits and one run in five innings, but did not earn a decision.
The Cardinals (5-2) host the Brewers (3-4) in the second game of the series at 2:15 p.m. EDT Saturday at Busch Stadium.
Los Angeles Angels first baseman Jared Walsh tags out Toronto Blue Jays pinch runner Jonathan Davis on a pickoff throw during the ninth inning at TD Ballpark in Dunedin, Fla., on Thursday. Photo by Steven J. Nesius/UPI | License Photo