Saturday’s Game Report: Cardinals 6, Rockies 0
By Rob Rains
There was no flirting with a no-hitter on this night, thanks to a leadoff double in the second inning, but that was about the only difference between Dakota Hudson’s last two starts for the Cardinals.
After working the 6 2/3 scoreless no-hit innings in his last start, Hudson turned in six more scoreless innings on Saturday night in pitching the Cardinals to the win over the Rockies at Busch Stadium.
Hudson allowed two hits as he extended his consecutive scoreless streak to 18 2/3 innings, covering his last three starts.
The win gave the Cardinals a 1 ½ game in the NL Central over the Cubs, who lost to Washington on Saturday. The Cardinals are a season-high 12 games over .500 after winning 12 of their last 15 games.
The victory might have been costly for the Cardinals, however. Kolten Wong fouled a ball off his left foot in the seventh inning and had to come out of the game, needing help to go down the stairs to the dugout. Manager Mike Shildt said Wong did not break his foot, but did have blood drained from under his toe. He said Wong’s status will be day to day.
Here is how the game broke down:
At the plate: Hudson got all of the offensive support he needed in the first inning on a two-run single from Marcell Ozuna, who has driven in seven runs in the first three games against the Rockies … Harrison Bader increased the lead to 4-0 with a two-run homer in the second and the Cardinals added to their lead with a sacrifice fly by Paul DeJong in the fifth and a home run by Paul Goldschmidt, his 29th of the season, in the seventh … Dexter Fowler drew a pair of walks and each time came around to score.
On the mound: The other hit off Hudson was a one-out single in the sixth. He walked three, including back to back walks in the fourth before one of two double plays turned by the Cardinals. He struck out two and recorded 13 of his 18 outs on ground balls as he improved his record to 13-6 … Tyler Webb allowed two two-out hits before Giovanny Gallegos got the final out in the seventh and worked a scoreless eighth … Dominic Leone pitched the ninth, striking out the side, to complete the Cardinals’ fifth shutout in 21 games this month and their nnth of the season.
Key stat: Although the Cardinals have had their share of games with numerous strikeouts this season, they struck out just four times on Saturday night after fanning only once on Friday night, in a combined 63 at-bats. The Cardinals are 7-3 this season when they have struck out four or fewer times, and in the three losses they scored a combined three runs.
Worth noting: The last time the Cardinals had a 1 ½ game lead in the division was on May 3. Their biggest lead this season has been three games … Jose Martinez is scheduled to begin a rehab assignment on Monday night at Springfield. He likely will serve as a DH for a couple of games before playing in the outfield as he recovers from a shoulder injury … Genesis Cabrera recorded nine consecutive strikeouts on Saturday night in Memphis, tying the Pacific Coast League record set last year by Alex Reyes. Cabrera allowed just two hits in seven shutout innings and struck out 12, retiring the final 15 hitters he faced, striking out 11 of them.
Looking ahead: The Cardinals will try to complete their first sweep of a four-game series against the Rockies since 2010 on Sunday with Michael Wacha getting the start.
Follow Rob Rains on Twitter @RobRains