Milwaukee, WI (Sports Network) - Carlos Beltran and Matt Holiday hit back-to- back solo home runs in the third inning and World Series hero David Freese followed with a two-run shot two batters later to help the Cardinals defeat the Brewers, 11-5, on Friday.
Yadier Molina began the home run spurt with a solo knock in the second, while Beltran finished 2-for-4 and Freese batted in three runs in the win for the defending champions.
Jaime Garcia picked up the win (1-0) by tossing six innings and giving up two runs on five hits and two walks.
Milwaukee starter Yovani Gallardo (0-1) was tagged for six runs on seven hits, including all four Cardinal homers, and five walks in just 3 2/3 innings.
Ryan Braun, last season's National League MVP, went 0-for-5 in his first game since being suspended for, and successfully appealing, a violation of Major League Baseball's drug policy.
He was greeted by a long standing ovation and chants of "MVP! MVP!" from the home crowd before lining out in the first.
Brewers backup catcher George Kottaras hit the first pinch-hit home run of his major-league career, a three-run blast in the bottom of the ninth.