Game Report: Cardinals 13, Reds 4

By Rob Rains

After scoring a total of three runs in Lance Lynn’s last three starts, his Cardinals’ teammates gave him a little more room to breathe on Tuesday night.

The Cardinals jumped on the Reds for eight runs in the first four innings and cruised to the win in the opener of the three-game series at Busch Stadium.

Lynn earned his first win since Aug. 5, having gone 0-1 with five no-decisions in his previous six starts despite posting a cumulative 2.31 ERA.

The win was the fourth in a row for the Cardinals and 10th in their last 12 games as they remained two games behind the Cubs in the NL Central. They are now a season-best eight games over .500 at 76-68, with 18 games left in the regular season.

Here is how the game broke down:

At the plate: One game after matching his career-high with five RBIs, Yadier Molina added three more with a two-run double in the first and a single in the sixth … Tommy Pham, Paul DeJong and Jose Martinez all chipped in two RBIs, with DeJong hitting his 22nd homer … DeJong finished with three hits, adding a single and double … The Cardinals drew nine walks, four of them issued to Matt Carpenter, who became the first leadoff hitter on the Cardinals to draw four walks in a nine-inning game since Bobby Bonds on June 8, 1980 in the first game of a doubleheader. .. Five of the batters who walked came around to score … Pham’s only hit was a two-run triple but he scored four runs.

On the mound: Lynn was lifted for a pinch-hitter after five innings, allowing three of the four runs scored by the Reds in the fifth. He did not walk a batter and struck out three. Cardinals’ starters have allowed just one unintentional walk in their last 24 2/3 innings … One of the runs he allowed was unearned because of his own throwing error in the fifth … Brett Cecil pitched two scoreless innings, and Zach Duke and Sandy Alcantara each had one scoreless inning in relief.

Key stat: In their last 12 games, when they have gone 10-2, the Cardinals’ starters have a combined record of 7-1 with a 2.14 ERA, allowing 18 earned runs in 75 2/3 innings.

Schedule released: The Cardinals released their 2018 schedule on Tuesday. They will open the year on March 29 in New York, with the home opener set for April 5 against Arizona. The Cardinals will have three weekend series at home against the Cubs, and will end the year with three games in Chicago. Also included on the home schedule are interleague series against Kansas City, the White Sox, Twins and Cleveland. They will play 13 of their last 19 games at home.

Worth noting: Because of Dexter Fowler’s knee injury, the Cardinals recalled Magneuris Sierra from Memphis on Tuesday to give them more depth in the outfield. Not wanting to leave Memphis a player short during the Pacific Coast League championship series, Breyvic Valera was sent back to the Triple A club … Game one of the best-of-five PCL final series against El Paso (Padres) was rained out in Memphis on Tuesday night, so the series will now begin on Wednesday night … Ozzie Smith was in uniform during batting practice Tuesday night, and among other things, spent time talking with DeJong … Adam Wainwright threw a bullpen session before the game, the next step in his trying to get himself back pitching before the end of the season.

Looking ahead:
Jack Flaherty will make his first start at home and third career start on Wednesday night. He was not involved in the decision in either of his starts in San Francisco and San Diego. Right-hander Tyler Mahle will be making his fourth career start for the Reds. Flaherty is 21, Mahle 22.

Follow Rob Rains on Twitter @RobRains