Cardinals – Really Good, Phillies – Not
By Matt Veasey
For a second straight night, the Saint Louis Cardinals soared past the Phillies, this time by a 10-1 score. In the first two games of this weekend set, the Cards have outscored the Phils by a margin of 22-5, showing the full difference between a first place team and a last place team.
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This one was actually a contest for most of the night, with the two teams tied at 1-1 into the 6th. But the Cards scored in each of the final four innings. They put up crooked numbers in both the 6th and the 8th. Before they knew what hit them, the game was out of the Phillies reach.
Aaron Harang got the start for the Phils, looking to recover some measure of his early season success. Harang appeared to find it, holding the Cardinals down for those first 5 frames. To that point, the righthander had allowed just a single run on four hits.
But in the top of the 6th, the Cards finally got to him. Jason Heyward and Yadier Molina began the frame with singles. Then Randall Grichuk struck a 3-run homer to centerfield, putting Saint Louis up by 4-1. Harang (4-9) would retire them with no further damage, but that 6th was his final inning, having allowed 4 earned runs on 7 hits and a walk.
The Phils had briefly taken a lead on a solo homer by Cody Asche in the bottom of the 2nd. In the top of the 4th, Molina doubled home Jhonny Peralta to tie things up. Then the Cardinals pulled away in the later frames.
On the mound for Saint Louis, John Lackey was pitching a gem. He allowed just 1 earned run on 5 hits and 2 walks. Lackey (6-4) went 7 innings in this outing, and then both Randy Choate and Trevor Rosenthal tossed shutout innings.
Having taken that 4-1 lead in the 6th, the visitors got an rbi singe from Heyward to score Kolten Wong and stretch their lead out to 5-1 in the 7th. In the top of the 8th, Saint Louis put it away with 4 runs. The Cards used 3 singles, 2 doubles, a walk, and a sacrifice to score those runs and take a 9-1 lead.
In the 9th, Seth Rosin made his first-ever Phillies appearance, his first appearance of the 2015 season in MLB. He was promptly greeted by a leadoff homer from Grichuk to provide the final 10-1 margin.
With the loss, the Phillies have now dropped 11 of their last 12 games, 14 of 16, and 23 of their last 28. In Sunday afternoon’s finale, rookie lefty Adam Morgan will get his first MLB start, taking on Cardinals young ace Michael Wacha in a scheduled 1:35pm start at Citizens Bank Park.