Game Report: Dodgers 9, Cardinals 7

David Freese hit perhaps the most famous triple in the 13-season history of Busch Stadium 3, the ninth-inning hit that drove in two runs and tied game 6 of the World Series in 2011, two innings before his home run won the game for the Cardinals.

The triple he hit Thursday night for the Dodgers might not be remembered in the same way, but it could turn out to be an important moment in this season’s battle for a spot in the playoffs.

Freese battled Austin Gomber for 14 pitches before connecting for the triple, which scored two runs and sent the Dodgers to the win and left them just one game behind the Cardinals in the race for the second wild-card position with 15 games to play.

Freese scored the third run of the inning on a single by Matt Kemp, handing that lead over to Clayton Kershaw before he had thrown one pitch. The Dodgers increased the lead to 8-1 by the fourth inning en route to the victory.

Here is how the game broke down:


At the plate: The Cardinals scored one run off Kershaw in the first and added three in the fourth, the rally ignited by a home run by pitcher Tyson Ross. Marcell Ozuna singled in a run in the inning and Paul DeJong drove in the other with a sacrifice fly … Ozuna doubled and scored on DeJong’s single in the fifth to cut the lead to 9-5 but DeJong made a costly baserunning error when he tried to advance to third on a single by Jedd Gyorko … In the ninth the Cardinals scored two runs off Kenley Jansen and got the tying run to the plate with two outs, but pinch-hitter Matt Adams grounded out to end the game … Matt Carpenter scored twice to increase his season total to 101, topping the 100 runs scored mark for the third time in his career … Yadier Molina played for the first time in a week but was pulled after his at-bat in the fourth with the Dodgers holding the big lead.

On the mound: Gomber failed to get out of the fourth inning, being lifted for Ross after the Dodgers opened the inning with three consecutive singles. He allowed nine hits and was charged with seven runs while recording only nine outs in suffering his first major-league loss …Ross allowed one run and Manny Machado capped the Dodgers’ scoring with a home run off John Brebba in the seventh inning.

Key stat: The triple for Freese was his fifth regular-season triple at Busch Stadium, the other four coming when he played for the Cardinals. His last triple came on June 22, 2013. It was his second triple this season and seventh of his career in 3,573 at-bats.

Worth noting: Ross’s home run was the sixth by a Cardinals’ pitcher this season, their highest total since also hitting six in 1973. It’s the first time they have had four pitchers hit at least one home run since 1966 and it was the first homer by a Cardinals’ reliever since Mark Worrell hit one in 2008 … The Cardinals surpassed the 3 million mark in home attendance for the 15th consecutive season … Outfielder Austin Warner, the Cardinals’ pick in the 40th round of this year’s draft, was named the MVP of the Gulf Coast League on Thursday. He hit .342 with four homers and 27 RBIs in 31 games before he was promoted to Johnson City … Erik Almonte was named the GCL manager of the year.

Looking ahead: Jack Flaherty will get the start in Friday night’s game, going up against the Dodgers’ Walker Buehler in a matchup of two of the best rookie pitchers this season in the NL.

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Mike Shidt Post-Game Audio