Friday’s Game Report: Dodgers 7, Cardinals 3
By Rob Rains
The Cardinals were on the wrong side of history on Friday night.
For the ninth time this season, the Cardinals lost the first game of a series, falling to the Dodgers in Los Angeles.
This is the first time in franchise history dating back more than 100 years that the Cardinals have lost the first game in their first nine series of the season. They had been tied with the 1988 Cardinals in going 0-8 in series openers.
After the Cardinals staked Jack Flaherty to a 2-0 lead in the first inning, the Dodgers tied the game in the bottom of the inning – and then scored five more runs as they dropped the Cardinals to 2-6 on their current road trip with two games against the Dodgers remaining.
The Cardinals have not won consecutive games since April 11-12.
Here is how Friday night’s game broke down:
At the plate: Paul Goldschmidt doubled and scored in the first inning and a wild pitch scored the other run – all the runs the Cardinals would score until the ninth inning. They had only three hits after the first inning, including another double from Goldschmidt in the fifth, until the ninth, when Paul DeJong, went to second on a single by Dylan Carlson and scored on a single by Lars Nootbaar … Nolan Arenado was hitless in four at-bats, dropping him to 3-of-25 on the road trip … DeJong started at shortstop and struck out three times before drawing the walk in the ninth.
On the mound: Flaherty needed 110 pitches to record 14 outs, allowing five runs on seven hits before he left the game with the bases loaded and two outs in the fifth. JoJo Romero got a strikeout to get out of that jam … Betts hit a leadoff homer in the first and Jason Heyward had two hits and two RBIs. Another run scored when Flaherty hit a batter with the bases loaded … The final two Dodgers runs came on a home run off Chris Stratton in the seventh.
Key stat: In three previous career starts at Dodger Stadium in his hometown, Flaherty had allowed only seven hits and three runs over 18 innings with four walks and 29 strikeouts. He had not started a game there since May 31, 2019.
Worth noting: Tyler O’Neill was in the original lineup for Friday night’s game but was a late scratch after complaining of back tightness. His status was said to be day-to-day … Albert Pujols was a pre-game visitor to the Cardinals clubhouse … Jordan Walker homered in his second game since being optioned to Memphis, on Friday night in Durham … Juan Yepez also homered for Memphis and over his last five games is 8-of-21 with three home runs.
Looking ahead: Jordan Montgomery will get the start on Saturday night in the second game of the series. Clayton Kershaw is scheduled to start for the Dodgers.
Follow Rob Rains on Twitter @RobRains