Thursday’s Game Report: Rockies 8, Cardinals 6
By Rob Rains
The back-to-back home runs allowed by Genesis Cabrera were the final blows that lifted the Rockies over the Cardinals on Thursday in Denver.
What happened earlier, both in that seventh inning and five innings earlier, however, was what ultimately cost the Cardinals a chance at a win and didn’t even involve the Rockies putting a ball in play.
Back-to-back walks allowed by Dakota Hudson with two outs in the second preceded a two-run double. Then in the seventh, back-to-back walks issued by Jordan Hicks came before Cabrera relieved and allowed two singles and the two home runs in the six-run inning.
That big inning, the second time in the series the Rockies scored six or more runs in an inning, made it an 8-2 game that proved to be too big of a margin for the Cardinals to overcome in the final two innings.
Back-to-back home runs from Paul Goldschmidt and Nolan Arenado in the eighth cut the lead to 8-5 and the Cardinals added another run in the ninth and had the go-ahead run at the plate but Arenado took a called third strike for the game’s final out.
Here is how the game broke down:
At the plate: Lars Nootbaar moved into the leadoff spot for the first time this season and second time in his career and he reached base three times with a double and two walks … Nolan Gorman hit his 13th homer of the year in the fourth and the Cardinals tied the game on an RBI single by Corey Dickerson, one of his three hits in the game … Goldschmidt also had three hits, including his 27th home run … The Cardinals loaded the bases with one out in the ninth but Goldschmidt hit into a force out, which scored a run, before Arenado struck out … Tyler O’Neill struck out in all four of his at-bats and was 1-of-13 in the series.
On the mound: The two batters who walked were the only runs that scored in five innings against Hudson, who allowed four hits and struck out six … Hicks worked a 1-2-3 sixth inning and got the first out in the seventh before issuing the consecutive walks to the Rockies’ eighth and ninth-place hitters … Cabrera did not retire any of the four hitters he faced before Jake Woodford relieved and got out of the inning.
Key stat: The three homers and three doubles on Thursday gave the Cardinals a total of 19 extra-base hits in the three game series (11 doubles, two triples, six homers), exactly half of their total of 38 hits.
Worth noting: Dylan Carlson got the day off after hitting just .106 (5-of-47) in his previous 11 games, all in the leadoff spot … It was not a good start for Jack Flaherty on Thursday night in his first rehab start for Memphis, allowing four runs in his one inning of work. He threw 35 pitches but gave up four hits including a home run.
Looking ahead: The Cardinals carry a half-game lead over the Brewers into the weekend series that begins Friday night at Busch Stadium. Jordan Montgomery will be making his second start.
Follow Rob Rains on Twitter @RobRains