August 8 Special: Eight Best St. Louis Cardinals’ Games of 2015

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May 31, 2015; St. Louis, MO, USA; St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Carlos Martinez (18) reacts after getting the third out of the second inning against the Los Angeles Dodgers at Busch Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

3. May 31 vs. Los Angeles Dodgers

Exactly one year from the Cardinals’ debut of once highly-touted prospect Oscar Taveras, St. Louis held a ceremony looking back on the career accomplishments and legacy of a teammate passed away too soon. This tested the emotions of the series finale’s starting pitcher Carlos Martinez, who became one of Taveras’s closest friends during his minor league journey. Sporting only two May quality starts through the series finale, Martinez held the Dodgers to one hit through seven innings and struck out eight.

The Cardinals came alive offensively in the first inning, using a Jhonny Peralta two-run home run to establish momentum early. While the Cardinals couldn’t capitalize on many other chances against Los Angeles starter Brett Anderson, Dodgers’ rookie Joc Pederson pushed for a comeback in the eighth inning with his 13th home run. In a quick turn of events, the Cardinals received strong bullpen contributions and an insurance run from Peralta to take the home series against the Dodgers and guide Martinez to his fifth win of 2015.

Game MVP: Carlos Martinez