St. Louis Cardinals win eighth-straight behind strong bullpen
Matt Carpenter drives in four in Cards’ win
For the second-straight night, the St. Louis Cardinals came from behind to defeat the division-rival Chicago Cubs in front of a packed house at Busch Stadium, this time winning by a 7-4 final to make it eight-straight victories.
After falling behind 4-1 after Chicago scored three runs in the top of the fifth, once again, St. Louis answered right back, scoring three of their own to tie things up 4-4. Those three runs came courtesy of a three-run shot off the bat of Matt Carpenter, who is red-hot of late.
For the second consecutive night, Mark Reynolds came up clutch for St. Louis – hitting a run-scoring double against reliever Edwin Jackson in the sixth that gave the Cardinals a 5-4 lead in the bottom of the sixth. Carpenter added a sac fly later in the frame to make it 6-4.
With the win, St. Louis ensured its best start in franchise history at 20-6, thanks to dominant bullpen work that followed a spot-start by left-hander Tyler Lyons, who did his part in the win.
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Lyons, who did not factor into the decision, pitched into the fifth, allowing three earned runs on six hits, while striking out seven. After he exited after 4 1/3 innings of work, five St. Louis relievers came through, delivering 4 2/3 shutout innings to ensure the win.
Matt Holliday turned in a great night at the dish, going 3-for-5, raising his average on the season to a robust .345. Yadier Molina also added a pair of hits in the winning effort.
Mitch Harris also earned his first big league win in relief – as his outstanding work on the mound continues for the Cards.
As a team, the Redbirds were 5-for-11 with runners in scoring position, while the Cubs failed to capitalize on countless opportunities, going 2-for-12 in the contest – the team’s fourth consecutive loss.
St. Louis (20-6) will welcome Chicago back to Busch Stadium on Wednesday night behind right-hander Lance Lynn (1-2, 3.07), who will be opposed by Cubs ace Jon Lester (1-2, 4.71), who is coming off his best start of the year in which he earned his first win of the season.