Wednesday’s Game Report: Cardinals 6, Royals 0
Before the Cardinals could go on to win their fifth consecutive game on Wednesday night and move back into a tie for first place in the NL Central, they had to first do something they failed to do through the game’s first six innings.
Get a hit.
Limited to just three walks and a runner reaching base on an error by Royals’ starter Brad Keller through the sixth, the Cardinals finally broke out in the seventh en route to their eighth consecutive win in Kansas City.
A leadoff single by Marcell Ozuna broke up the no-hit bid and was the first of six consecutive singles for the Cardinals, producing four runs. One of the hits, which came with the bases loaded, was an infield single by Randy Arozarena, who was making his major-league debut.
Dakota Hudson worked the first six innings for the Cardinals, who got their second consecutive shutout. The win, combined with Chicago’s loss at Philadelphia, left the Cardinals tied with the Cubs for the division lead.
Here is how the game broke down:
At the plate: The Cardinals ended up scoring five runs in the seventh on the six singles, a sacrifice fly from Dexter Fowler and a fielder’s choice ground out … Paul DeJong, who had one of the singles, capped the Cardinals’ scoring with his 20th homer of the year in the eighth … DeJong had been just 3-of-24 in his previous seven games … Arozarena added his second career hit, a single to right, in the ninth.
On the mound: Hudson had not pitched past the fourth inning in his previous three starts but allowed just five hits in his six innings. He also benefitted from two double plays and got 11 of his 18 outs on ground balls … It was the second start of the year in which Hudson did not allow a run, but in the other game, on April 9 against the Dodgers, he pitched just 4 2/3 innings … Tyler Webb, John Gant and Junior Fernandez combined to retire the last nine Royals batters in order over the final three innings.
Key stat: The last time the Cardinals posted consecutive shutouts they actually had three in a row, from Aug. 6-8, 2015, all on the road.
Worth noting: The last Cardinal to get two hits in his major-league debut was Patrick Wisdom, on Aug. 12 of last year, also in Kansas City … Arozarena had reached base in the last 37 games he started while playing in Memphis … The game was the final one of the season against an American League team, and the Cardinals finished that part of their schedule with a 9-11 record.
Looking ahead: The road trip continues on Thursday night with the first of four games in Cincinnati. Michael Wacha will get the start.