St. Louis Cardinals get series win over Kansas City Royals

Dylan Carlson #3 of the St. Louis Cardinals runs the bases after hitting a solo home run during the first inning against the Kansas City Royals at Busch Stadium on August 8, 2021 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Scott Kane/Getty Images)
Dylan Carlson #3 of the St. Louis Cardinals runs the bases after hitting a solo home run during the first inning against the Kansas City Royals at Busch Stadium on August 8, 2021 in St. Louis, Missouri. (Photo by Scott Kane/Getty Images) /

The St Louis Cardinals seemingly got a needed ego boost as they were the superior team in the a series win over the Kansas City Royals. And then Sunday happened.

It was a sigh of relief to see the St. Louis Cardinals come out the victors in a series win over the Kansas City Royals this weekend at Busch. The Cardinals won Friday 4-2, Saturday 5-2 and lost Sunday 6-5.

This series was a positive one for the Cardinals until Sunday, and even it had it’s good moments. Let’s discuss the good, bad and ugly.


Paul Goldschmidt got the offense going early Friday with his 18th homer of the season to center field off Mike Minor. Goldschmidt’s homer traveled 403 feet at 106.2 mph.

In the second, Paul DeJong singled to score Tyler O’Neill. It was a good night for O’Neill, who was 4-4. He hit his 18th homer of the season off Minor in the fourth. The blast traveled 410 feet at 102.5 mph.

Adam Wainwright and Yadier Molina had their 295th start together on Friday. Wainwright pitched seven innings, giving up seven hits, two runs and two walks. He did strike out six and induce nine swing and misses. T.J. McFarland pitched a clean eight inning, striking out one.

Alex Reyes got back in the saddle Friday after a devastating night Thursday. Reyes looked as though getting back on the mound was just the boost of confidence the All-Star reliever needed. He got his 25th save of the season pitching the ninth inning, where he struck out one batter.

On Saturday, Molina singled in the first to score Dylan Carlson and Goldschmidt. The Cardinals took advantage of Hunter Dozier’s misplay as he was blinded by the late afternoon sun in right field. It was good to see!

In the fourth inning, Matt Carpenter doubled on a fly to right field. Paul DeJong scored. Tommy Edman was out at home on a relay throw home from Dozier and Whit Merrifield to Salvador Perez.

In the fifth inning, Nolan Arenado pleased the crowd with his 22nd home run of the season to left center field in the Royals bullpen. The homer traveled 381 feet at 101.5 mph.

Arenado’s teammates congratulated him on his team leading blast with a cool drink.

In the sixth inning, Lars Nootbaar singled to left field scoring DeJong. It was great seeing Nootbaar’s emotion as he helped out his team.

Kwang Hyun Kim pitched four innings giving up four hits, two walks and two earn runs. He did strike out three.

Luis Garcia got the win for the Cardinals Saturday as he pitched two innings and struck out three. Ryan Helsley pitched the seventh and struck out one. Genesis Cabrera looked good in the eighth inning, giving up one hit but striking out two.

Giovanny Gallegos got his turn at getting back in the saddle after a rough couple of outings in the Atlanta series. Gallegos got his second save of the season as he pitched a clean ninth innings. Gallegos is an important guy in this team’s bullpen. It is very good to see him get a chance and get a confidence boost.

On Sunday, Dylan Carlson hit a lead off home run to center field. The blast, his 12th of the year, travelled 403 feet and provided a good start for the Cardinals. That would be it until the seventh inning. Paul Goldschmidt knocked a single to score Jose Rondon.

Carlson hit a sacrifice fly to right field allowing Harrison Bader to score in the eighth inning. Goldschmidt then singled to score Andrew Knizner. Nolan Arenado singled to center allowing Nootbaar to score in dramatic fashion to tie the game 5-5.


It seemed strange for reporters and fans alike to learn of a possible elbow issue for Kwang Hyun Kim during a Zoom interview with Matt Carpenter on Saturday.

Excuse me?

Jeff Jones of the Belleville News-Democrat tweeted this was news to reporters.

According to reporting from The Athletic’s Katie J. Woo, Kim felt soreness in the elbow after his start against the Cubs in St. Louis. While Kim believed it was due to pitching on short rest, he didn’t believe it would be an issue. Woo noted it does explain the nine day gap between starts.

It’s not odd for the Cardinals to not let reporters or fans in on possible health issues involving the team. It is odd, however, to hear about said issues from Carpenter — even if it was an accident.


You do have to wonder what the score could have been if the Cardinals were able to move the runners they had in scoring position or left on base. On Friday, the Cards were two for five with runners in scoring position and left seven on base. Molina grounded into a double play in Friday’s game. Not what you want out of your greatest of all time catcher, for certain.

On Saturday, the team was five for 12 with runners in scoring position, leaving eight on base. One night after going four for four, O’Neill was zero for four and struck out three times. O’Neill has been such an important piece to the club this summer. You have to wonder what him getting on base would have produced. The team’s lack of getting consistent at-bats at points of the season has been frustrating and this, for O’Neill, was one of those moments.

On Sunday, there was a lot of ugly.

The team was four for 13 with runners in scoring position leaving 11 on base. DeJong and Knizner each grounded into double plays.

The team attempted a comeback but fell short. And it was ugly.

Jon Lester pitched 5.1 innings, giving up six hits, two walks and five earned runs. He did strike out two. For most of the game, Lester looked resigned to being angry with home plate umpire Angel Hernandez than pitching effectively.

In the fourth inning, Michael Taylor singled to Carlson. While Edman created a deflection, allowing. Carlos Santana to score. Hanser Alberto grounded into a force out, allowing Hunter Dozier to score. Salvador Perez hit a sacrifice fly to O’Neill, allowing Merrifield to score. Taylor singled to O’Neill in the sixth inning, allowing Dozier to score.

It’s amazing that one umpire can throw one pitcher completely off his game. But that seems to be what happened for Lester. It was ugly. It’s hard to envision this is what John Mozeliak, Cards president of baseball operations, envisioned of Lester when trading Lane Thomas for him. He did eat 5.1 innings on Sunday, though.

All tied up in the ninth inning, the game went into a two hour rain delay. Prior the the delay, Alex Reyes was pitching and seemed to fall back into the frustrating trends we observed in the Atlanta series.

Reyes gave up a single to Nicky Lopez allowing Jarrod Dyson to score.

Reyes is definitely a work in progress. You can tell he has so much talent. He also generates moments of massive frustration.

In Conclusion

Glad this team is getting an off day as they head to Pittsburgh for a three game set. It will be a good time to reset, spend some time together on the road as a team and pull it together for the final weeks of this season.

During the series they had gotten back to five hundred, but did fall back to a 55-56 record. They are 10.5 back in the NL Central. They are eight back in the wild card.

The Pittsburgh Pirates are in last place in the NL Central with a 41-71 record. They have lost their last five games. Hopefully, the Cardinals can get back to a winning record whilst extending the Pirates losing record.