Mark McGwire was a lot happier passing Reggie Jackson than he was catching him.
McGwire passed Jackson for sixth place with his 564th career home run, and Matt Morris tied a career high with 11 strikeouts in the Cardinals' 3-2 victory over the Detroit Tigers on Saturday.
When McGwire tied Jackson on Thursday, the Cardinals lost.
McGwire was a rookie and Jackson was in his final season in 1987 when the two were teammates on the Athletics.
"He signed me an autograph at the halfway mark of the season saying, "Congratulations on allowing me to watch you hit the first of many 40-plus (homer) seasons,' " McGwire said. "When you're a kid and somebody like that is writing something to you, it's pretty special.
"It was really neat to break in with somebody like that."
Manager Tony La Russa, who managed Jackson and McGwire that season, met with Jackson on Monday.
"He knew exactly where Mark was," La Russa said. "The last thing he told me before I left was to wish him well and hope he passes me soon. And, he did."
McGwire, who entered in a 3-for-45 slump, connected to lead off the second. He hit a 1-and-1 fastball from Jose Lima over the leftfield wall for his 10th homer this season, leaving him nine behind fifth-place Harmon Killebrew.
Ray Lankford and Albert Pujols also homered for the Cardinals, who have won four of 14 and avoided a three-game sweep. Pujols' 22nd homer was his second in 25 games, but it broke a team rookie record set in 1953 by Ray Jablonski.
One more step
With his 10th homer Saturday, Mark McGwire broke a tie with Reggie Jackson for sixth on the all-time list:
No. Player HR
1 Hank Aaron 755
2 Babe Ruth 714
3 Willie Mays 660
4 Frank Robinson 586
5 Harmon Killebrew 573
6 Mark McGwire 564
7 Reggie Jackson 563
8 Mike Schmidt 548
9 Mickey Mantle 536
10 Jimmie Foxx 534
Barry Bonds 534