The St. Louis Cardinals had a rough night on Monday, suffering an 8-run defeat that saw them lose to a team that is still 8 games below the .500 mark for the season. There were a few things that were disturbing about this loss, but the Redbirds still maintained their hold on the second Wild Card spot for the time being.
|St. Louis Cardinals||0||2||0||0||0||1||0||1||0||3||9||1|
|San Diego Padres||0||2||2||2||0||0||2||3||x||11||17||1|
|WP||Eric Stults (6-2, 2.56)|
|LP||Jaime Garcia (4-7, 4.41)|
Behind the Box Score: Though most of the St. Louis Cardinals had a night they want to quickly forget, Pete Kozma showed why the Redbirds brought him up after the injury to Rafael Furcal. He was 3-4 on the night, and hit a triple that scored David Freese and Daniel Descalso in the 2nd for his first two RBI of the season. The 18th overall selection of the 2007 MLB Draft is hitting .455 in his first 11 games, with 3 extra base hits.
Yadier Molina also had a nice play in the 2nd, when he fielded an Eric Stults bunt, and threw a bullet to 3rd to nab Cameron Maybin. David Freese then threw out Stults at 1st with a bullet of his own. After the 2-5-3 double play, there were 2 outs in the 2nd, and it looked like all momentum was in the St. Louis Cardinals corner.
Following that dazzling play, however, the San Diego Padres got on the board twice, tying the game at 2 before a Chase Headley ground out to Jaime Garcia mercifully ended the inning.
In the 3rd, Cameron Maybin hit his 7th homerun of the season behind a Yasmani Grandal walk, giving the Padres a 4-2 lead, which they wouldn’t relinquish, but only add to. Another 2 runs in the 4th, 2 in the 7th, and 3 in the 8th finished out the scoring for San Diego. The St. Louis Cardinals did add a run on an Allen Craig single to right field in the 6th, but that only cut the lead to 6-3 at the time, and that’s all the Redbirds could muster for the rest of the night.
Quick Look at the Standings: The St. Louis Cardinals loss to begin the roadie is not good, and though the Cincinnati Reds win helped them maintain the same lead over the Pittsburgh Pirates, the Los Angeles Dodgers inched a half-game closer without even playing. The run differential that was the major’s best has flattened out, and time is running out on any real hope of a Central Division crown. It’s looking increasingly likely that the Cardinals will just have to be content (at best case scenario) with the 2nd Wild Card spot.
Falling flat at the start of a road-trip is not something you ever want, but credit the very underrated San Diego Padres bats and bullpen with a great night. St. Louis Cardinal hitters struck out 10 times, and didn’t do themselves many favors, drawing just 1 walk and 9 hits. Through 3 innings, Jaime Garcia was at 60 pitches, and that was his night. Every Cardinal reliever allowed at least a run, too. The Cardinals also earned 10 Ks from their pitching, but 17 hits and 8 walks allowed will earn an L most nights.