Cardinals Jump on Castillo Early, Yadi’s Bat is Back, Hicks Records First Career Save, Cardinals Beat Reds 6-4
Luis Castillo looked like he was cruising his way towards and immaculate inning to start the game, striking out Carp and Pham on six pitches, both on changeups. Cafecíto and Swags Ozuna had different plans with Castillo, as they would change the tides, smacking back-to-back HR’s, giving Wacha an early 2-0 lead. Cafe’s to RCF, going 391 feet, leaving the bat at 104 mph. Ozuna’s was an absolute BLAST, the thing probably hasn’t landed as we speak. Ozuna unloaded on a 1-0, 96 mph heater, taking it to deep CF, 435 feet, 110 mph off the bat.
Michael Wacha struck out the side his first inning of work this afternoon, giving up a two out double to Joey Votto. Wacha set down Schebler and Barnhart to open the inning, striking them both out on his excellent changeup. Votto then doubled and Wacha proceeded to get Gennett on a nasty curveball to end the inning, throwing 14 pitches.
Castillo continued his excellent feel with his changeup in the 2nd inning, striking out Fowler and Muñoz, back-to-back, to end the inning, his fourth strikeout of the game. Wacha too, would pick up his fourth strikeout of the game in the bottom of the 2nd, striking out Winker on a 96 mph fastball, high and outside.
The Cardinals bats would tally three more runs on the board in the top of the 3rd. Wacha worked a nine pitch walk vs Castillo and Carp would single to put the first two runners on base. Castillo then struck out Pham for the second time, his fifth of the game, all on changeups. Cafecíto drew a walk to load the bases for Ozuna, who would pop out to Votto in foul territory to bring up Yadi. Yadi, being the clutch hitter he is, cleared the bases, yanking a 3 run double to LCF. Gyorko would strike out looking to end the inning, Cardinals leading 5-0.
The Reds would pick up two runs in the bottom of the 4th, following a Castillo 1-2-3 inning. Gennett would line a single to RF and Suàrez would cash in, stroking a two run HR to deep LF, making it 5-2 Cards. Duvall would knock a one out double to LF before Wacha would set down the next two, Peraza on a fly out to Dex, and Castillo on a strikeout, Wacha’s fifth of his outing.
Castillo and Wacha would go back and forth the next two innings, matching scoreless innings. Castillo wouldn’t allow a hit, Wacha would do the same. Castillo would end his day after tossing: (6 IP, 4 hits, 5r/5er, 3 bb, 10 k’s, 110 pitches) Wacha would be pulled with two outs in the bottom of the 5th, after throwing 96 pitches. Wacha would allow a walk Suàrez before Mayers relieved him, recording the final out on one pitch, getting Duvall to ground into a 6-4 fielder’s choice.
Wacha’s final line: (5.2 IP, 4 hits, 2r/2er, 3 bb, 6 k’s, 96 pitches)
Matt Carpenter, leadoff guy, extended the Cards lead to 6-2 in the 7th, hitting a two out solo HR to deep RF (401 feet, 101 mph exit velocity) off Austin Brice, relieving Luis Castillo.
The Reds would pick up a run off Mayers in the bottom half of the 7th. Peraza opened the inning hitting a double to LF. Brandon Dixon, who stuck out ending the game last night, was next and he’d strike out looking at a 97 mph fastball. Schebler kept his bat rolling, ripping an RBI double to RF, scoring Peraza, making it 6-3 Cardinals. After Mayers retired Barnhart on a fly out to Ozuna, Matheny would turn to a lefty, Austin Gomber. Gomber would walk the first man he faced, Joey Votto. With Gennett batting, Gomber would throw a wild pitch, allowing both men to advance a base. Gomber won the battle against Gennett, inducing a huge fly out to Pham.
Sam Tuivailala, working his second consecutive game, would struggle through the 8th, throwing 25 pitches before escaping further damage. After Suàrez grounded out to Muñoz to begin the inning, Winker would connect for a solo HR to RF, making it 6-4 Cardinals. Casali (pinch-hitting) & Peraza would collect back-to-back singles, still with only one out. With Dixon batting and an 0-2 count, Tui would throw a pitch that got too much of the plate. Dixon took the pitch to RF, luckily Harrison Bader is a righteous outfielder and made an incredible catch to preserve the lead. Tui & Carp would team up to make a smooth play to end the inning, getting Schebler to ground out, 1-3, on a bang-bang play.
Enter Jordan Hicks: For the third consecutive day, Jordan Hicks would make an appearance out of the bullpen, this time searching for his first career save. Hicks threw 28 total pitches over the past two outings before the one today. Hicks just keeps that strikeout % on the rise, striking out the side to record his first career save for a 6-4 Cardinals win. Hicks would record his first strikeout on pinch-hitter, Blandino, painting a 101 mph sinker on the outer half. Votto would reach base with an opposite field single bringing up the tying run in Scooter Gennett. Hicks would strikeout Gennett on a lethal slider in on the hands. Hicks would close the door against the next batter, Suàrez, striking him out on an 0-2 count with an 100 mph sinker. Hicks first career save ends with a 6-4 Cardinals victory, as they look to complete the three-game sweep tomorrow afternoon.
The ace, Carlos Tsunami Martínez (3-2, 1.83) will eye for the divisional sweep as he takes on Anthony DeSclafani (0-1, 7.20). First pitch from The Great American Ball Park is 12:10 c/t.
Thanks for reading, cheers!
Game 62 is in the book
by Stew // @StewStilez