St. Louis, MO (SportsNetwork.com) - Brian Roberts hit a go-ahead RBI single in a three-run 12th inning Monday that lifted the New York Yankees to a 6-4 win over the St. Louis Cardinals in the opener of a three-game series.
The Memorial Day game marked the first meeting between the two fabled teams in nine years.
Roberts delivered a bases-loaded single through the left side off Randy Choate (0-2) and Alfonso Soriano added a sacrifice fly followed by Brendan Ryan's RBI base hit, both off Jason Motte.
"At that point, you're just trying to get the guy in," Roberts said of his single.
Jhonny Peralta scored on Jon Jay's double in the bottom of the 12th after reaching base on Derek Jeter's throwing error, but David Robertson got out of the inning to record his 11th save.
The Yankees improved to 5-2 against Cardinals in the regular season, including a three-game sweep in New York in 2003. The Cardinals won two out of three in their last meeting in 2005 in St. Louis.
New York pushed its winning streak to three games after winning its last two in Chicago against the White Sox.
The Cardinals lost for just the third time in their last 12 games.
"We had a couple of opportunities to get the big hit. You can't do it all the time," Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said.
Cardinals right-hander Michael Wacha, pitching five days after taking a foul ball of his elbow in the dugout, gave up four hits and three runs in seven innings.
Yankees righty Chase Whitley, still chasing his first MLB win, was charged with three runs on eight hits in five-plus innings.
The Cardinals had other opportunities in extra innings.
Jay hit a leadoff single in the bottom of the 10th but the Yankees turned a double play to end the inning when first baseman Brendan Ryan nabbed Kolten Wong's sharp grounder before stepping on the bag and throwing to Jeter at second base to get Jay in a rundown.
Alfredo Aceves (1-2) hit Matt Holliday leading off the bottom of the 11th but he was stranded at first base. Brett Gardner leapt at the wall in left field to catch Yadier Molina's long drive for the second out.
The first three Yankees batters of the game reached base against Wacha -- Gardner on a walk, Jeter on a single and Jacoby Ellsbury on an RBI base hit that scored Gardner.
The Cardinals tied the score in the bottom of the first inning after Matt Carpenter led off with a triple and came home on Wong's double.
The Yankees started the fifth the same way they started the first -- walk, single, RBI single by Kelly Johnson -- and Gardner added a sacrifice fly to make it 3-1.
St. Louis tied the score again and knocked Whitley out of the game in the sixth.
Holliday led off with a double off the top of the left-field wall and the Cardinals loaded the bases after Matt Adams singled and Whitley hit Molina. Allen Craig's grounder plated the first run -- the Yankees were unable to turn a double play -- and Peralta followed with a sacrifice fly to make it 3-3.