Game Report: Cardinals 7, Phillies 0

By Rob Rains

The only time Carlos Martinez threw nine scoreless innings for the Cardinals before Saturday he did not get credit for a shutout because his team also failed to score.

Those teammates made certain that didn’t happen again.

Given a seven-run cushion, Martinez finished his first professional shutout and first complete game in the majors, allowing just four hits while striking out 11 Phillies in the game at Busch Stadium.

It was Martinez’s 81st career start for the Cardinals and 150th as a professional. His only previous complete game came in his first pro season, in 2010, for the rookie-level Dominican Summer League.

In his start against the Giants on May 20, Martinez allowed just two hits in nine innings, when he came out of the game, but neither team scored until the 13th inning.

“What more would you want?” said manager Mike Matheny. “He kept them guessing because he had everything working.”

Martinez did have one scare in the game, when he was hit by a pitch on his right hand as he was attempting to bunt in the seventh inning. The pitch appeared to graze the back of his hand.

Here is how the game broke down:

At the plate: The Cardinals matched their season high for runs in an inning by scoring four times in the fourth. Dexter Fowler drew a leadoff walk, followed by consecutive doubles from Stephen Piscotty and Jedd Gyorko. After Gyorko scored on a balk, Eric Fryer’s two-out single drove in the final run of the inning … The Cardinals increased the lead to 7-0 in the seventh on Matt Carpenter’s bases-loaded double and a sacrifice fly from Gyorko, his third RBI of the game … It’s the first time since May 10 in Miami the Cardinals scored three or more runs in two innings in the same game.

On the mound:
Martinez threw 107 pitches in recording the Cardinals’ first shutout and complete game of the season. His 11 strikeouts marked the third time this season and sixth in his career when he struck out 10 or more in a game. The only inning he allowed two baserunners was the sixth, when he gave up a one-out single and a two-out walk, the only walk he allowed in the game … The 11 strikeouts tied the second highest total of Martinez’s career.

Key stat: The Cardinals have not won more than two games in a row since a six-game winning streak ended on May 10. They defeated the Cubs in consecutive games on May 13-14 and won two in a row against the Dodgers on May 31-June 1.

Worth noting: Martinez is the first Cardinals pitcher to record a shutout against the Phillies in the regular season since Joe Magrane on Sept. 7, 1988 … Yadier Molina missed his second consecutive game because of tightness in his lower back. Matheny said Molina could have played in an emergency. His status for Sunday has not been determined … The seven runs were the most the Cardinals have scored in a game since they scored eight on May 21 against the Giants.

Looking ahead: Adam Wainwright will try to bounce back from allowing nine runs to the Reds in his last start when he pitches the series finale against the Phillies on Sunday. Aaron Nola will start for the Phillies.

Follow Rob Rains on Twitter @RobRains