Game Report: Cardinals 11, Giants 2

Luke Weaver was in desperate need of a bounce-back start on Thursday night and that was exactly what he delivered.

Weaver worked eight innings for the first time this season, allowing only two hits, and got plenty of offensive support from a season-high 18-hit attack as the Cardinals defeated the Giants in San Francisco.

Coming off the worst start of his career, when he allowed 10 hits and eight runs against Atlanta, Weaver retired the first 16 hitters he faced before Gorkys Hernandez reached on an infield single with one out in the sixth. Weaver then gave up a two-run homer to Alen Hanson, the only other hit for the Giants.

The Cardinals staked Weaver to a 4-0 lead before he threw a pitch, three of the runs coming on a home run by Jedd Gyorko. Gyorko later drove in two more runs with a double in a four-run sixth inning.

The five RBIs by Gyorko were the most by a Cardinal in a game in San Francisco since Felix Jose also had a five-RBI game on Sept. 1, 1991. That also was the last time the Cardinals had 18 hits in a game at San Francisco.

Here is how the game broke down:

At the plate: Matt Carpenter and Harrison Bader also homered for the Cardinals, the 16th of the season for Carpenter and sixth of the year for Bader … Gyorko, Bader and Yadier Molina all had three hits for the Cardinals and every player in the starting lineup, including Weaver, had at least one hit and all but Yairo Munoz and Weaver scored at least one run … It was the second consecutive game in which the Cardinals had 16 at-bats with a runner in scoring position.

On the mound: Weaver had not thrown more than 5 2/3 innings in any of his last seven starts. He threw 93 pitches, struck out seven and for the first time in 18 starts this year did not walk a batter … Brett Cecil worked the ninth, retiring the Giants in order.

Key stat: Carpenter’s home run was only his second in 17 career games at A T&T Park but he has had plenty of success there. His 1-of-3 night, plus one walk and three runs scored, left him with a .391 average (25-of-64) with 17 runs scored and eight RBIs in his career in San Francisco.

Worth noting: Dexter Fowler returned from paternity leave, having missed the three games in Arizona. To make room on the roster, Tyler O’Neill was placed on the disabled list with a hamstring strain he suffered on Wednesday night … Fowler came into the game in the seventh inning and struck out in his only plate appearance … The Cardinals also activated reliever Matt Bowman from the DL and optioned him to Memphis. He has been on the major-league roster for all of the last two seasons … The Cardinals also made a trade on Thursday, swapping international bonus cap space to the Phillies for left-handed pitcher Elniery Garcia, who was with Double A Reading. Garcia, a 23-year-old native of the Dominican Republic, was suspended for 80 games last season after testing positive for PEDs … Paul DeJong is expected to be activated from the DL on Friday … Top draft pick Nolan Gorman hit his fifth homer in the last five games for Johnson City on Thursday night, his sixth in 13 games this season.

Looking ahead: John Gant will get the start in the second game of the series against the Giants on Friday night.