Game Report: Cardinals 6, Padres 2

By Rob Rains

After Luke Weaver threw seven scoreless innings, striking out 10 Wednesday night, he joined the rest of the Cardinals’ fans in watching the final two innings, hoping the bullpen would not blow the game.

A battered group that has been erratic at best lately, and learned before the game it will be without closer Trevor Rosenthal for the rest of the season, finally got some relief from Tyler Lyons as the Cardinals defeated the Padres at Busch Stadium.

Weaver, making his third start of the season and 11th of his career, allowed just three hits before leaving the game for a pinch-hitter.

The last time a Cardinals pitcher worked seven or more scoreless innings, and struck out 10 or more batters, was in an 11-strikeout shutout by Vinegar Ben Mizell on June 21, 1952 in his 11th career start.

The Cardinals set a franchise record by having five batters hit by a pitch. The previous record of four had last occurred on Sept. 26, 2000, also against the Padres.

Here is how the game broke down:

At the plate: Hitting leadoff for the 10th time this season, Kolten Wong had three hits, scored three runs and stole two bases – both in the eighth inning. It’s the first time the Cardinals had two stolen bases from their leadoff hitter since Jon Jay did it in 2012 …Gyorko drove in two runs with singles in the third and eighth inning … Dexter Fowler had a sacrifice fly in the first after the Cardinals got back-to-back doubles from Wong and Tommy Pham to open the inning.

On the mound: Weaver, taking the spot of the injured Adam Wainwright, had the second 10-strikeout game of his career. Of the three hits he allowed, two were by the opposing pitcher and the other was an infield single. He walked one and hit a batter, which loaded the bases with two outs in the fourth before he got an inning-ending strikeout … After Weaver left for a pinch-hitter following his 99 pitch outing, Seung Hwan Oh gave up a single and triple to the first two hitters he faced to break the shutout. Lyons relieved and retired the next three batters, striking out the final two, to strand the runner … John Brebbia gave up a solo homer in the ninth.

Key stat: In their last 12 games, the Cardinals’ bullpen has thrown a collective 42 1/3 innings in which they have allowed 32 earned runs (plus three unearned runs), an ERA of 6.80. Only once in those 12 games has the bullpen not allowed at least one run. The only exception to the bullpen’s struggles has been Lyons, who has allowed just two hits and no runs in his last 14 2/3 innings, coming in 16 games.

Worth noting: The Cardinals snapped their streak of having allowed at least five runs at 12 consecutive games, one shy of tying the franchise record … Left-hander Ryan Sherriff became the latest reliever to be called up from Memphis, replacing Josh Lucas, who was optioned back to the Triple A club after making two appearances … Matt Carpenter showed up sick at the ballpark on Wednesday and was sent home. He has been in a slump, going 4-of-30 with 10 strikeouts in his last eight games ... Gyorko replaced Carpenter at first, his second start at the position this season.

Looking ahead:
Carlos Martinez will get the start on Thursday night in the final game of the series. Luis Perdomo, a former pitcher in the Cardinals’ minor-league system claimed by the Padres in the 2015 Rule 5 draft, will start for San Diego in the 6:15 p.m. game.

Follow Rob Rains on Twitter @RobRains