Matt Adams brings the power in St. Louis Cardinals return
Left-handed hitting first baseman Matt Adams brought the power in his return to the St. Louis Cardinals this weekend. Adams beat the shift with home runs on Friday night and Saturday night. It was the first time since September that Adams homered in consecutive games.
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Playing the Washington Nationals in a three game series at Busch Stadium, the first baseman returned from the DL to hit the game-winning home run on Friday night, giving Lance Lynn his seventh win of the season. Trevor Rosenthal pitched a perfect 9th inning for his 18th save of the season.
The second face-off this season between Lynn and Jordan Zimmerman resulted in a pitching duel and the fastest game this season as the game finished 2 hours, 3 minutes after the first pitch was thrown. Not only was this the 14th start of the season but it was also the 100th career appearance for Lynn in a major league game. With eight strikeouts on the night, Lynn is just five away from hitting 500 strikeouts for his career.
Lynn is good for at least one scoreless start per month this season. He did so over 7 IP in April against the Milwaukee Brewers, a complete game against the New York Yankees in May, and Friday night against the Nats.
“When things are going well like it was today, you couldn’t ask for anything better,” Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said after the game according to MLB.com. “I didn’t see pressure, I didn’t see him being distracted. He looked like he was focused on making good pitches.”
Friday night’s shutout was the 14th of the season and leads all of MLB. The team threw 15 shutouts last year.
Unfortunately for Matt Holliday, his on-base streak of reaching base safely at home has come to an end at 30 games. Albert Pujols was one ahead of him with 31 games in 39 and Solly Hemus set the franchise record of 33 games back in 1953.
Adams’ home run on Friday night marked the third 1-0 game this season for the Cardinals. Interestingly enough, all three 1-0 wins have come on home runs.
Shelby Miller got the start on Saturday for the second time this season against Stephen Strasburg but was unable to get a decision, having been pulled with the game tied 1-1. In about 24.2 IP in his career against the Nationals, Miller has 2 earned runs and a 0.73 ERA.
With a double in the third inning, Miller joined Matt Carpenter and Adams in hitting two doubles off of Strasburg in their career. The list is very small as there are only ten players on it. Miller scored on Carpenter’s RBI single.
Jhonny Peralta hit his team-leading 17th double in the fifth inning. The shortstop has now hit three in his last six games.
With runners in scoring position in the sixth, the Cardinals had a chance to do some damage but Yadier Molina grounded out to end the inning. Molina’s batting average has dropped to .283 this season and has hit .154 in his last 10 games.
Following Adams’ 7th inning home run and two quick outs in the inning, the Cardinals did some major damage. Jon Jay singled and advanced to second on a passed ball. Carpenter walked and Mark Ellis was soon hit by a pitch to load the bases for Matt Holliday. Holliday walked and drove in Jon Jay for the 997th RBI of his career. Allen Craig singled for his second hit of the night and drove in Carpenter for his team-leading 34th RBI of the season.
The Nationals entered the series having won eight of their last ten. The Cardinals have limited them to one run in 18 innings. The Cardinals will start Jaime Garcia against Doug Fister.