The Cardinals would send Captain Jack out to the mound tonight, in search of getting the team back to the (.500) mark and his third win in four starts. Opposing Flaherty would be Joe Ross, younger brother of former Redbird, Tyson Ross. Ross blanked the Cards bats in 6IP of work just last week at Busch, punching out 5 batters.
Tonight was a different story, not with the strikeouts, because he matched his 5 from last time out, but because he’d give up four bombs to the tune of ten earned runs.
After a painless 1-2-3 top of the 1st for Ross, Jack would match his counterpart by retiring the side in order on 17 pitches, striking out Turner to leadoff the inning with a dotted 95mph heater.
With two outs in the top of the 2nd, Pauly Deez would send it to the treeeeeeeeeez!!!! And if you aren’t quite hip on that yet, you best start getting hip to that!!! DeJong would connect off the fair pole for his 4th shot of the year to give Jack an early 1-0 to work with.
Jack would take it and run with it, retiring the side in order again in the bottom half of the 2nd, getting some nifty defense from his sure handed first baseman, Goldy, along the way.
The Birds would manufacture some runs to begin their part of the 3rd, getting things started with a leadoff single the other way from J Will (2-3). Flaherty then would play his role, sacrificing himself 1-4 on the putout, moving Williams into scoring position.
This is when the back-to-back jack frenzy from Saturday picked back up, as Edman (on a 3-0 count, too) would send his 2nd HR of the year to LCF to make it a 3-0 game. Goldy wasted no time following that up with a solo dong of his own to LF, his 2nd of the year to make it a 4-0 game.
Jack just kept on zooming his half of the 3rd, striking out his 500th career strikeout with Gomes (slider) and Robles (4SFB) before bringing up Ross. And like clockwork, Ross would collect the first base hit for the Nats, dropping a single into shallow CF. But he’d be stranded right there after a lengthy battle with Trea Turner, who eventually flew out to Williams in LF.
The bats would add 7 more runs in the 4th and 5th innings, manufacturing a couple in the 4th and using the long ball in the 5th.
Carlson and DeJong would leadoff the 4th with a HBP and BB vs Ross and Carp followed it up by beating the shift with a ripped single into RF to score Carlson. Carp would be thrown out at 2B on the play, as Soto would can him trying to stretch out a two bagger.
After a J Will walk, Flaherty would drop down his second 1-4 sacrifice bunt- this time driving in DeJong to make it a 6-0 game.
The nail in the coffin would come in the top of the 5th, courtesy of Pauly Deez to the MF TREEEEZ x2!!! With the bases juiced, DeJong would get a high fastball and send it to LF, sneaking it over the wall to break the lead open to 10-2.
A pitching change and two batters later, J Will would continue the HR Derby fest, sending an absolute missile over the wall in LCF. The thing had to leave the stadium in three seconds. Williams would send the ball off the bat at 109mph and crush it 411 feet. Not only was the blast cool, but the ball went right into a fans glove who had previously misplayed the Edman HR. The perfect redemption fell right into his hands, literally. Let’s hope that nuke didn’t break it.
Captain Jack would end his evening after 6IP, 6 hits, 5 runs (2ER), 2bb/ 5k’s, 107 pitches (63 strikes), in line for his third win on the young season. Jack really ran the FB velo up a few times this start, mixing in a really filthy slider all night.
Cabrera (1IP) and Ponce (2IP) would work the final three innings for the pen. Cabrera would allow the first two batters (Stevenson and Soto) to reach base in the 7th. Stevenson (pinch-hitting for Harper) would walk and Soto would move both of them into scoring position, ripping a double into RF. But no problem for a guy with stuff like Génesis.
Cabrera would battle back with back-to-back strikeouts of Bell (97mph FB) and Babe Ruth (98mph sinker), before getting Harrison to fly out to Williams on the 17th pitch of his outing.
Ponce tossed 23 pitches to record the final six outs, hitting Gomes with a fastball along the way. Ponce ended things in DC tonight with a strikeout of Bell on a changeup after a decent battle, pulling the string after a handful of fastballs. The 12-5 win would put the Cardinals back at (.500) with an (8-8) record.
Uncle Charlie (0-2, 7.11) looks for a quick series win tomorrow evening as he takes the ball against a struggling, veteran lefty, Patrick Corbin (0-2, 21.32). First pitch from Nats Park is scheduled for 6:05pm c/t.