Shelby Miller, Jaime Garcia help St. Louis Cardinals take two from Toronto
Shelby Miller and Jaime Garcia helped pave the way for the St. Louis Cardinals to take two from the Toronto Blue Jays in back-to-back shutouts.
After Lance Lynn took the loss in the series opener on Friday night, it was up to Miller and Garcia to lead the Cardinals to victory during the rest of the series north of the border.
Lynn had allowed two runs on six hits but Blue Jays rookie Marcus Stroman was dominant. Stroman limited the Cardinals to one run on seven hits through seven innings pitched. The sole run came on an RBI single from Allen Craig, scoring Matt Carpenter. Matt Holliday was thrown out at the plate on a throw from right fielder Jose Bautista. Craig had two hits on the evening.
Miller went the distance on Saturday afternoon. Miller through 105 pitches for the second complete game shutout of his career. In one day, he lowered his ERA from 4.09 to 3.56 on the season.
Randal Grichuk hit his first major league home run in the fifth inning to give the Cardinals the lead.
Aaron Loup replaced Mark Buehrle as the seventh inning started. Loup would struggle to get through the inning and, in turn, was relieved by All-Star pitcher Steve Delabar.
Following a double by Craig, Jhonny Peralta was intentionally walked to bring Oscar Taveras to the plate. Taveras singled and loaded the bases. After a first pitch foul, Mark Ellis saw four straight balls and walked, scoring Craig.
With two outs, Tony Cruz stepped up to the plate and singled on a liner to center, scoring Peralta and Taveras. Following a pitching change that brought in Delabar, Carpenter walked to load the bases again. Grichuk walked and drove in Ellis. After starting the inning with a ground out, Matt Holliday ended the inning by flying out to center.
After being rocked by the Kansas City Royals last week, Garcia returned strong this afternoon. He limited the Blue Jays to three hits over seven innings.
Pat Neshek and Trevor Rosenthal pitched the eighth and ninth innings.
The Cardinals had 11 hits on Sunday, going 2-for-5 with runners in scoring position. The team did most of the damage early on in the second inning.
Jon Jay and Ellis had back to back singles. Peter Bourjos hit a sacrifice fly to center for the second out of the inning and drove in Jay. Ellis stole second with Cruz batting before scoring on Cruz’ double. Carpenter hit his second home run of the season, driving in Cruz.
Peralta hit his tenth home run of the season in the third inning.
The Cardinals have Monday off before heading to Tampa Bay.