Saturday’s Game Report: Diamondbacks 2, Cardinals 0
By Rob Rains
With Ryan Helsley and Genesis Cabrera ready to come in from the bullpen, the Cardinals elected to have Miles Mikolas go back out to pitch the eighth inning in a scoreless game on Saturday against the Diamondbacks.
It turned out to be the wrong decision.
“Miles did his job; I didn’t do mine,” said manager Oli Marmol.
Mikolas had allowed only two hits, had not walked a batter and had seven strikeouts on 91 pitches, the second time this week he did not allow a run over seven innings.
But on his third pitch in the eighth, Ketel Marte broke up the scoreless game with a home run, and one out later Nick Ahmed also homered to produce the only runs of the game at Busch Stadium as the Cardinals lost their second game in a row to the Diamondbacks.
The Cardinals had just two hits as they were shut out for the second time in their last five games.
Here is how the game broke down:
At the plate: The only hits for the Cardinals were a single by Harrison Bader in the second inning and a single by Yadier Molina in the seventh. They had only one runner reach third base, Edmundo Sosa, who reached base when he was hit by a pitch and stole second … The Cardinals had as many stolen bases and errors, two, as they had hits.
On the mound: The two home runs snapped a streak of 19 consecutive scoreless innings by Mikolas covering his last three starts. He had allowed only one run in his last four starts, covering 25 innings … He had not allowed a home run in his first 29 innings this season.
Key stat: This was only the second time the Diamondbacks shut out the Cardinals in 53 games at Busch Stadium 3. The other time was a 4-0 win on July 27, 2017; in 82 career games in St. Louis, the only other Arizona shutout came on April 20, 2003, a 1-0 win.
Worth noting: After having his two-game suspension reduced to one game on appeal, Nolan Arenado served the suspension on Saturday … The Cardinals finished April with a record of 11-8. They have not had a losing record in April since 2007, although three times since then they finished the month at .500 … The Cardinals, like all teams, will have to reduce their roster from 28 players to 26 players after Sunday’s game. They have the option of cutting two pitchers or one pitcher and one position player.
Looking ahead: Jordan Hicks, who had to leave his start on Tuesday night after being hit on the right wrist by a line drive, is scheduled to start the final game of the four-game series on Sunday.
Follow Rob Rains on Twitter @RobRains