Sunday’s Game Report: Padres 5, Cardinals 3
By Rob Rains
There are a lot of things to like about San Diego – the weather, the beach, the zoo – but it is understandable if the Cardinals wanted to get out of town as soon as possible Sunday night.
In a weekend they will try to forget, the Cardinals were swept in a three-game series there for the first time since 2012. They have now lost nine of their last 11 games at Petco Park, including the postseason.
The biggest problem on Sunday night was the same as it has been in other games, including Friday night – walks, lots and lots of walks. Two of them came with the bases loaded, forcing in runs.
Three of the five Padres runs were scored by players who reached base on a walk. In the series, the Cardinals issued 26 walks in 24 innings. Of the Padres combined 23 runs, 10 were scored by players who reached on a walk.
According to ESPN, the 26 walks were the most issued by the Cardinals in a three-game series since 1900.
“They didn’t expand the soon,” said manager Mike Shildt. “There probably was only a handful of swings over the course of the series that felt like they really chased. You get outs in the strike zone. That’s what big-league pitchers do. We’ve got to be in the strike zone more.
“We didn’t do our part to get them engaged where they might take some swings out of the zone. Just didn’t control the strike zone enough. It was a big part of the series; at least two of the three games it cost us.”
Their eight walks on Sunday night increased their season total to 184 in 41 games, an average of 4.5 walks per game. It’s the most in the majors, 19 more than any other team (Reds and Rockies).
Tyler O’Neill had to come out of the game after spraining his finger while stealing second base. He will be re-evaluated when the team comes home, but his status is considered day-to-day.
Here is how Sunday night’s game broke down:
At the plate: Nolan Arenado put the Cardinals in front 2-0 with a home run in the first inning, his team-high ninth of the year. It gave him a home run in each game in the series, only the second Cardinal to homer in each game in a series in San Diego. Albert Pujols did it in his rookie season in 2001. The longest home run streak in Arenado’s career is six games, in 2015 … Yadier Molina followed the home run with a single, giving him the rare distinction of getting hits off a father-and-son combination. San Diego starter Ryan Weathers is the son of David Weathers; Molina was 2-of-10 in his career off David Weathers, the last hit coming in 2009 … The Cardinals had only four hits after the first inning,, with their only other run coming in the sixth when Paul Goldschmidt led off with a double and later scored when Molina hit into a double play.
On the mound: Starter Kwang Hyun Kim allowed just one baserunner in the first three innings, but retired only one of the six hitters he faced in the third before being pulled from the game. His walk to Tommy Pham was his first of the season to a right-handed batter in 79 plate appearances. That was followed by a single and then the two consecutive bases-loaded walks that led to the four-run inning … Another walk came around to score in the sixth, off Ryan Helsley.
Key stat: Tommy Edman was hitless for the second game in a row, going 0-of-5 in each game and was just 2-of-15 in the series. For the six-game road trip, he was 4-of-28. He has not had an extra base hit in his last 47 at-bats dating back to May 5, and over that stretch is 9-of-47, a .191 average.
Worth noting: Matt Carpenter said Saturday night was his first time pitching in a game since he was 13 years old. “I’ve asked to do that just about every year I’ve been in St. Louis,” Carpenter said Sunday. “Every time it was answered with a very firm and hard ‘absolutely not.’ With this year, the role that I’m playing, the opportunity arose and I got the OK. It was fun. I had a great time doing it.” Carpenter threw 1 1/3 scoreless innings, and heard from many family members and friends about his performance. “Everybody got a pretty good kick out of it,” he said. “A lot of the pitchers I trained with this off-season, maybe a little jealousy there, throwing up a scoreless inning. They said I made it look too easy. I had some fun with that.” … During his third rehab start for Memphis on Sunday, Miles Mikolas allowed four hits and walked one over six scoreless innings against Nashville, an outing that included retiring rehabbing Christian Yelich on a ground out and fly out. Mikolas even hit a two-run homer. If he recovers well from his 80-pitch outing, it’s likely he will make his next start for the Cardinals at some point next weekend … It’s also possible that rehabbing pitcher Daniel Ponce de Leon (shoulder inflammation) will be activated and join the Cardinals bullpen as soon as Tuesday.
Looking ahead: The Cardinals will be off on Monday before hosting the Pirates for a two-game series beginning Tuesday night, followed by another day off on Thursday. John Gant will get the start in the series opener.
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