Saturday’s Game Report: Cardinals 3, Reds 0

Saturday’s Game Report: Cardinals 3, Reds 0

By Rob Rains

One night after missing a ball he admitted he should have caught, which helped the Reds beat the Cardinals, Harrison Bader made sure he hit a ball where it couldn’t be caught.

Bader’s home run and an earlier double on Saturday night sent the Cardinals past the Reds at Busch Stadium, helping Kwang Hyun Kim earn his first major-league victory.

“Every day you wake up it’s a new day, a clean slate,” Bader said.

It was Bader’s first home run of the season, which came in the fifth inning. It was the first homer by a Cardinals center fielder this season.

Two innings earlier, Bader had used his speed to reach second on a bloop double and he and Kolten Wong later scored on a single by Tommy Edman.

Those were more than enough runs for Kim, who allowed just three hits over six innings.

According to Baseball Reference, Kim became the first pitcher in franchise history to get a win as a starting pitcher and a save in the first three games of his career.

Here is how the game broke down:

At the plate: Three of the Cardinals seven hits came in the third inning, the double by Bader and singles from Wong and Edman … Wong went to second on his single on the throw to the plate, after Bader had stopped at third … Paul Goldschmidt reached base four times with a single and three walks … Every Cardinal reached base on either a hit or a walk except for Dylan Carlson, who was back in the starting lineup after a night off on Friday night. He was hitless in three at-bats and is now 4-for-35 to start his career.

On the mound: Kim recorded three strikeouts and did not walk a batter. Two of the hits he allowed were to Kyle Farmer, hitting ninth for the Reds, who also got another hit later off Andrew Miller to account for three of the Reds four hits in the game … John Gant relieved Kim and worked a 1-2-3 seventh before issuing a leadoff walk in the eighth, bringing Miller into the game. He got a double play before Farmer’s hit and after walking Joey Votto, he left in favor of Giovanny Gallegos, who struck out Nick Castellanos to strand the runners and end the eighth, then worked a 1-2-3 ninth for the save.

Key stat: In the 11 games the Cardinals have played since resuming their season, their eight starters have combined to allow 11 earned runs in 44 1/3 innings, an ERA of 2.23. None of the starters have allowed more than two earned runs in a game during that stretch.

Worth noting: According to researcher Tom Orf, Bader is the first ninth-place hitter for the Cardinals to hit a double and home run in the same game since Chris Carpenter did it on Oct. 1, 2009 … The Cardinals are expected to decide on Sunday whether to have Carlos Martinez work on rejoining the team as a starter or reliever as he comes off the injured list.

Looking ahead: Daniel Ponce de Leon will get the start on Sunday in the series finale.

Follow Rob Rains on Twitter @RobRains

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For the latest news and features in St. Louis Sports check out STLSportsPage.com. Rob Rains, Editor.