On September 2, 1972, the Los Angeles Dodgers faced off against the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium II. Starting for the Dodgers was Doug Rau, a left-handed pitcher making his Major League debut, while the Cardinals sent out Durham to the mound. The 1972 season was an interesting one for both teams. The Dodgers were in the midst of a rebuilding phase, having traded away some of their established stars in the previous year. Meanwhile, the Cardinals were coming off a successful 1971 campaign and were looking to repeat their success. The league was also experiencing a significant story in 1972, as it was the year of the first players' strike in Major League Baseball history, which had led to the cancellation of some games earlier in the season.

The game started off quietly, with both teams failing to score in the first inning. However, the Dodgers broke the deadlock in the second inning, scoring four runs. This scoring spree was initiated by a walk to Crawford and a single by Valentine. A wild pitch by Durham moved the runners to second and third, followed by an intentional walk to Russell. This set the stage for Yeager, who tripled to left, clearing the bases. Rau, in his debut game, followed suit with a triple of his own, scoring Yeager and putting the Dodgers up 4-0. The Cardinals' pitching struggled to contain the Dodgers' offense, with Durham being replaced by Palmer partway through the second inning.

The Cardinals' offense, on the other hand, was held in check by Rau. The Cardinals managed only three hits and one run, which came in the seventh inning when Jutze doubled and was driven in by Carbo. The Dodgers scored one more run in the sixth inning, with Yeager scoring on a single by Lacy. The Dodgers' pitching was the star of the game, with Rau going the distance, giving up only one run on three hits in his Major League debut.

The Dodgers' 5-1 victory over the Cardinals was a bright spot in an otherwise challenging season for the team. Despite their struggles, the Dodgers would go on to finish the season in second place in the National League West, while the Cardinals would finish fourth in the National League East. The 1972 season was also notable for the performance of Steve Carlton of the Philadelphia Phillies, who won the Cy Young Award after an outstanding season in which he won 27 games for a team that won only 59 games in total. Meanwhile, the Oakland Athletics would go on to win the World Series, defeating the Cincinnati Reds in seven games.

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