Saturday’s Game Report: Reds 8, Cardinals 4

Saturday’s Game Report: Reds 8, Cardinals 4

By Rob Rains

The problem for the Cardinals on Saturday came on two balls that weren’t hit where Tommy Edman could catch them.

Edman, starting again in center field, made three highlight-reel plays, including two catches on the warning track, but he could do nothing about balls hit to Nolan Arenado and in front of Jordan Walker.

Arenado took too long to make a throw to first on what should have been the third out in the second inning and a bases-loaded double followed that gave the Reds an early lead en route to the win at Busch Stadium.

In the third, Walker failed to make a diving catch in left field and the ball got by him for a leadoff triple that led to another two runs for the Reds who eventually built a 7-0 lead before cruising toward the end of the game.

Here is how Saturday’s game broke down:

At the plate: Dylan Carlson was the Cardinals’ best hitter on the day, going 3-of-3, including a two-run homer, and walking twice … All of the Cardinals’ runs came in the final three innings as Paul Goldschmidt doubled in a run in the seventh, Carlson’s homered followed in the eighth and Arenado hit a one-out homer in the ninth … The sixth through ninth hitters for the Cardinals were a combined 1-of-15, with the lone hit a double from Jordan Walker in the eighth.

On the mound: Miles Mikolas was charged with the first five runs, giving up seven hits and walking two while recording two strikeouts. Mikolas had allowed a total of five runs in his previous four starts, covering 27 innings … Drew VerHagen allowed two runs and the final run scored after a leadoff walk by Genesis Cabrera in the ninth.

Key stat: The Cardinals loaded the bases and forced Andrew Abbott to throw 33 pitches but couldn’t score, and Abbott shut out the Cardinals into the sixth, scattering four hits, on a combined 72 pitches over 4 2/3 innings.

Worth noting: Luken Baker was the Cardinals’ cleanup hitter in only his third game in the major leagues. According to Baseball Reference, the last Cardinal to hit cleanup with less than five games of major-league experience was John Gall, who hit cleanup in his fourth major-league game on July 31, 2005. The last Cardinal to start as the team’s cleanup hitter sooner than his third game in the majors was Jim Lindeman, who hit cleanup in his second career game in 1986. Baker, serving as the DH, had a single in five at-bats … When Walker (21) and Nolan Gorman (23) both homered on Friday night, it marked the first time two Cardinals 23 or younger homered in the same game since June 28, 1983 when David Green and Andy Van Slyke did it … Packy Naughton, who has been on the injured list since April 9 because of a forerarm strain, will begin a rehab assignment with Memphis on Sunday.

Looking ahead: Adam Wainwright will get the start on Sunday in the final game of the series against the Reds. It will be the Cardinals’ last game against Cincinnati until Sept. 8.

Follow Rob Rains on Twitter @RobRains

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