Tonight's game got interesting for Carlos Martinez almost immediately. At times, he flummoxed batters, them visibly confused by his pitching repertoire, which included 99 mph fastballs and devastating offspeed pitches... that seemed on the verge of being out of control at times. Martinez fought through the first inning and persevered, allowing no runs despite a strong threat from the Dodgers offense. They stranded three baserunners in just the first inning.
El Gallo continued with the fight of the first inning in the second. With 2 runners on and 1 out, Martinez faced Dee Gordon. He attacked with his arsenal, ranging from upper 90s to upper 80s, with varying amounts of control*. In this instance, Dee Gordon persevered with some BABIP luck, chopping the ball towards surprisingly good defender Matt Adams, who was not able to field the ball this time.
*Carlos' pitch control is his primary concern this season. His walk rate at gametime was 3.92 BB/9, which is a blatant illustration of his main weakness thus far.
Vs. Puig, El Gallo locked in and retired the tough hitter, showing more perseverance. Even though he let on plenty of baserunners, he allowed just 1 run over the first 2 innings. During the third time around for CarMart, he became slightly more efficient, but needed a fantastic defensive play by Allen Craig (perhaps the best play we'll see Craig ever make) to bail him out (which also occurred in the 2nd inning, thanks to a solid play by Peralta).
It was not until the 4th inning that there was any kind of story for the Cardinals offense. Yadier Molina crushed a Ryu offering, tattooing the foul pole in left field to tie the game at 1 apiece. But that was all the Cardinals* could muster.
*The offense this year must be paying back some of last year's good fortune, as the Cardinals are in the middle of the pack by sabermetric stats, but in the top 10 worst teams in RBI... and for runs, the Cardinals had been outscored by 96 runs by the Rockies at the time of this writing, one of the worst team totals in MLB.