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Game balls: Rating Game 1
10/05/2004 6:04 PM ET is awarding "game balls" -- or, in this case, Arches, to represent the Cardinals as the Gateway to the West, and Dodger Dogs, that culinary delight of Dodger Stadium -- for performances in the 2004 National League Division Series.

Five Arches: On top of the world
Four Arches: Clear view down river
Three Arches: Walked underneath
Two Arches: Saw it in the guide book
One Arch: I thought you said, St. Paul

Five Dogs: The Works
Four Dogs: That and a cold one
Three Dogs: No onions
Two Dogs: Ketchup only
One Dog: Cold wienie


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Larry Walker: The Cardinals right fielder is nearly the forgotten man behind the MVP-caliber triumvirate of Albert Pujols, Scott Rolen and Jim Edmonds. Forgotten, that is, until he steps to the plate or makes a play in the field that underscores his MVP qualities. Walker drilled a pair of homers in Game 1 of the National League Division Series against the Dodgers as the Cardinals bullied their way to an 8-3 win.

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Albert Pujols: The first baseman put the Dodgers on notice early they will have to rev up their comeback machine and be certain it is in working order. Pujols hammered a 2-2 pitch from starter Odalis Perez with two out in the bottom of the first and deposited it in the center field seats. It was the first of five Cardinals homers on the afternoon.

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Woody Williams: There was no question the Cardinals had the offensive weapons when the season began, but the surprise has been their starting pitching. Williams got it started for the Cardinals in Game One with six solid innings, allowing two runs, eight hits and a walk to pick up his second career postseason win.

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Edgar Renteria: A team doesn't win 105 games without production throughout the lineup. Sandwiched between Rolen and Edmonds on Tuesday, Renteria went 1-for-2 with a two-run double as the Cardinals took control in a five-run third inning. Renteria also scored in that inning and reached base in two other appearances with a pair of walks.


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Yhency Brazoban: It was mop-up duty, but the 24-year-old tossed a scoreless eighth inning nonetheless. More than just a moral victory for the Dodgers, Brazoban didn't melt under the postseason heat and manager Jim Tracy will need the converted outfielder to pitch some clutch innings at some point in the series.

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Adrian Beltre: The MVP candidate added his mark in a game the Dodgers refused to give up on. Beltre singled in the first and singled and scored in the sixth, motoring from first on a triple by Alex Cora.

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Cesar Izturis: The Dodgers shortstop went 2-for-5 on the afternoon and helped fuel a brief two-out rally to get his team on the board. Izturis doubled in the fifth and scored the team's first run. Izturis singled to right in the third.

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Jayson Werth: Staring at a 7-0 hole, the Dodgers left fielder teamed with Izturis to break the ice with a two-out RBI double in the fifth. Werth was also the Dodgers' first baserunner, singling to right in the top of the first.

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Odalis Perez: The Dodgers needed a strong start from Perez on Tuesday to keep his team in the ballgame, but the left-hander did not make it out of the third inning. Perez allowed three home runs as the Cardinals raced out to a six-run lead en route to their 8-3 victory.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.