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Cardinals hit three home runs, win 4-2 in Game 1 of doubleheader

Matt Holliday, Jedd Gyorko, and Yadier Molina all hit home runs behind a good Carlos Martinez start.

Gyorko likes home runs
Gyorko likes home runs
Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

I'll try to make this as quick as possible because there's another game today!  Game 1 of a doubleheader is slightly more important than the second game if only because it dictates what you can and can't do in the second game.  The second game is essentially you responding to whatever happened in the first game and hoping you can cobble together enough innings and enough runs to win the game.  I'm mostly talking about pitching of course.

So it was pretty important that the Cardinals receive a good start from Carlos Martinez.  Since we're talking about Carlos Martinez, this seemed like a near certainty, especially against the Padres (sorry Padres).  At first though, Martinez struggled enough to put that certainty to doubt.  He allowed a double and a home run to start the game.  So two batters in and the Cardinals are losing 2-0.  It's not like he pitched a whole lot better the rest of the inning either, walking a guy and giving up a single.  He got out of it because Wil Myers apparently has no idea how to swing a bat in Busch Stadium (struck out for his fifth straight time this series) and a double play ball to end the inning.

And that was the last time Martinez had any trouble for the rest of the game.  He allowed another single and he hit Myers on a first pitch fastball for the next six innings.  Nobody else got on base.  Despite only throwing 89 pitches, he was taken out after seven innings.  This may have been related to a bloody nose.  I'm not sure.  Oh yeah he had a bloody nose that caused the game to stop.  I didn't personally witness this as I didn't see the first couple innings, but it happened.  Either way, I certainly welcome Mike Matheny possibly taking starters out too early instead of taking them out when it's definitely too late.

Hitting-wise, it's a pretty simple recap.  The Cardinals were able to hit Colin Rea like the 5.01 ERA he has.  I mean he plays at Petco for half of his starts and has a 5.01 ERA.  So he's probably not very good.  The Cardinals got on base every inning that he pitched.  In the 1st and 3rd, potential rallies were ruined by double play balls.  In the 2nd, Matt Holliday led off with a line drive home run into the opposing team's bullpen.   In the 4th, the unlikeliest of events happened.  Matt Adams doubled with one out.  No, that's not the unlikely part.  Yadier Molina hit a deep enough fly ball to LEFT field that Adams was able to tag up on 3rd.  All of that is unlikely to me.  Jedd Gyorko then swung a mighty swing, let go of his bat in such a way that suggested he was king and that we must respect him, and the ball respected him and went to deep centerfield for a 3-2 lead.

In the 6th, Molina homered.  So he can still do that on occasion apparently.  The Padres bullpen shut down the offense for the rest of the night, but it didn't matter.  The Cardinals had gotten enough for the pitching.  Kevin Siegrist and Seung Oh pitched two spotless innings, combined for three strikeouts and two weak groundouts.

WPA Graph

Source: FanGraphs


- So Gyorko hates his former team.  Going into today's game, he was 9-14 with three home runs and a triple.  So clearly he was kind of slacking today, only getting on base once.  He did make it a home run but as you can see by the large sample size, that's par for the course.  So he needs to step it up tomorrow.

- Carlos Martinez final line: 7 IP, 5 Ks, BB, 4 hits, 2 ER, 50% GB

- I was counting 700 forks and knives while watching this game so if I missed anything, that's why.

Tonight, the Cardinals try to take their third straight game from the Padres with Jaime Garcia facing Paul Clemens.  Clemens is a really, really bad pitcher.  So the Cardinals should win that game.  Hopefully.