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Cardinals Win Eighth Straight to Sweep Padres & Pad Wild Card Lead

The offense picked up a rough pitching performance from the staff, putting up eight runs as the Cardinals held on for a tense 8-7 victory.

MLB: San Diego Padres at St. Louis Cardinals Jeff Curry-USA TODAY Sports

The Redbirds came into Sunday seeking a sweep of the Padres to put some distance between themselves and the other Wild Card contenders. J.A. Happ got the start for the Cards across from a struggling Jake Arrieta. Arrieta gave up five runs (four earned) in the first and only recorded one out before being lifted due to an injury. Happ went deeper into the game but was lifted after the fourth, in which he gave up three runs and took a hard comebacker off his foot. The bullpens for both teams struggled badly, but the Cardinals relievers held on till Giovanny Gallegos secured the save for the 8-7 win and the three-game sweep.

1st Inning

Fernando Tatis, Jr. led off and jumped on a first-pitch fastball, flying it to the warning track in right, where Dylan Carlson made a leaping catch at the wall for the first out. Jake Cronenworth got a sinker middle-middle but lined it to left for the second out. Manny Machado got under a sinker at the knees, flying out to right to retire the Padres in order.

Tommy Edman hit a 2-1 slider to left-center for a leadoff double. Paul Goldschmidt singled past a diving Cronenworth to put runners on the corners. Tyler O’Neill worked a seven-pitch walk to load the bases for Nolan Arenado, who popped a sinker to Tatis, Jr. in center. Tatis dropped the catch and threw late to home, allowing Edman to score and everyone else to reach safely with a 1-0 Cardinals lead. Carlson followed with a sac fly to left to make it 2-0. Edmundo Sosa lined a 2-0 changeup down the left field line, scoring O’Neill to stretch the lead to 3-0 and leaving runners at second and third. Craig Stammen then replaced Arrieta on the mound for the Padres as Arrieta was apparently dealing with an injury. Harrison Bader got a center-cut sinker and smoked it down the right field line, scoring Arenado and Sosa to extend the lead again to 5-0. Andrew Knizner grounded out to third for the second out and Happ struck out swinging to send the game to the second.

2nd Inning

Tommy Pham lined a 2-0 sinker to right for the first out. Austin Nola got jammed on an inside fastball and grounded it to short for out number two. Eric Hosmer struck out swinging through a fastball on the inner half of the plate for the last out.

Edman flew out to left on a 1-0 sinker. Goldschmidt struck out swinging under a high cutter in the zone and O’Neill chased a curveball in the dirt for the last two outs.

3rd Inning

Wil Myers struck out chasing an elevated fastball. Adam Frazier walked on seven pitches and was moved to second by Stammen on a sac bunt. Tatis, Jr.singled to left, putting the Padres on the board at 5-1. Cronenworth then lined out to center to send the game to the bottom of the third.

Arenado grounded a sinker through the right side for a leadoff single, but Carlson flew out to left and Sosa grounded into a double play before the Cards could get anything going in the frame.

4th Inning

Machado beat out a soft grounder to Edman for an infield hit. Pham followed and skied a fastball to center for the first out. Nola worked a full count and doubled into the left-center gap, putting runners at second and third. Hosmer grounded out to first, allowing both runners to advance to make it 5-2. Myers, with a runner on third and two outs, singled on a ball that was inadvertently deflected by Happ, leaving no play for the infield. Nola scored on the play to make it 5-3. Frazier then grounded out to third to retire the Friars.

Bader opened the bottom of the frame with a flyout to right field. Knizner grounded a cutter to third for the second out. Matt Carpenter pinch hit for Happ and popped out to short to sit the Cards down quickly in the fourth.

5th Inning

Alex Reyes replaced Happ in the fifth and retired pinch hitter Trent Grisham with a lineout to right. Tatis, Jr. then popped a sinker to Goldschmidt for the second out. Cronenworth then hit a sinker back to Reyes, who threw to first for the final out.

Pierce Johnson took the mound for the Padres in the bottom of the inning and got Edman with a groundout to second. Goldschmidt got a curveball that hung at the top of the zone and ripped it to left-center for a one-out double. O’Neill jumped on another curveball for a single up the middle, scoring Goldschmidt to push the lead to 6-3.

Arenado reached at a curveball off the outside corner and tapped it down the third baseline for an infield hit. Carlson worked the count full but went down swinging out ahead of an outside curveball for out number two. Sosa sat back on a 2-2 curveball and took it the other way for a bloop double, scoring O’Neill to stretch the lead to 7-3. Bader closed the inning with a strikeout, chasing a fastball well above the strike zone.

6th Inning

Machado led off the sixth and popped out to third. Pham got a sinker up and in his wheelhouse and lined it into the seats left, making it a 7-4 game. Nola followed the home run with a popout to Knizner. Hosmer drew a two-out walk but was stranded at first after Myers struck out chasing a slider off the outside corner.

Nabil Crismatt replaced Johnson and gave up a bloop hit to Knizner. Lars Nootbaar pinch hit for Reyes and grounded into a force out at second. Edman flew a first-pitch changeup to center for the second out. Nootbaar stole second on the 1-0 pitch to Goldschmidt, who grounded out to second to send the game to the sixth.

7th Inning

T.J. McFarland came in to pitch the seventh for the Redbirds and surrendered a leadoff single to Frazier. Jurickson Profar pinch hit for Crismatt and grounded into a 4-3 double play as Edman tagged Frazier and threw to first. Tatis, Jr. chased an outside changeup, striking up to end the top of the inning.

Dinelson Lamet came in from the bullpen for San Diego and walked O’Neill, who then stole second on the 1-0 pitch to Arenado. Arenado got a fat fastball near the top of the zone but flew it to left for the first out. Carlson took a 2-1 fastball back up the middle, scoring O’Neill to make it 8-4. Sosa then grounded into a 4-3 double play to end the inning.

8th Inning

Cronenworth led off the eighth with a single to right field. Luis Garcia then relieved McFarland and gave up another single to Machado to put two on. Pham turned on a 2-2 sinker, doubling to left and scoring both runners to close the deficit to 8-6.

Sosa cut off the throw on the play and overthrew home, allowing Pham to advance to third. Nola got an 0-1 slider and popped out to second for out number one. Genesis Cabrera then replaced Garcia on the mound and retired Hosmer with a groundout to first that scored Pham, pushing the score to 8-7. Myers doubled to extend the inning and advanced to third on a wild pitch, but was stranded there when Frazier flew out to center for the last out.

Daniel Hudson came in to pitch the eighth and retired Bader with a fastball on the outside corner for a strikeout. Knizner grounded out to short and pinch hitter Jose Rondon popped out to first to sit the Cardinals down in order.

9th Inning

Giovanny Gallegos relieved Cabrera and retired pinch hitter Caratini on a swinging strikeout. Tatis, Jr. followed suit, chasing a slider for Gallegos’ second strikeout. Cronenworth then popped out to center as the Cards held on to win 8-7 for the sweep.

The Cardinals improve to 79-69 on the season and extend their winning streak to eight games. They now sit three games ahead of the Phillies and Reds and three and a half games ahead of the Padres for the second Wild Card spot. The Redbirds will travel to Milwaukee on Monday for a four-game set with the Brewers, with Jake Woodford taking the mound in game one against Freddy Peralta. The first pitch is scheduled for 6:40 PM CT.

Quick Notes

With the club playing well, the Cardinals have decided to give Dakota Hudson another rehab start in AAA before being reactivated, per Katie Woo of The Athletic.

Final Pitching Lines


Happ: 4 IP / 4 H / 3 R / 3 ER / 1 BB / 2 K / 0 HR

Reyes (W, 9-8): 2 IP / 1 H / 1 R / 1 ER / 1 BB / 1 K / 1 HR

McFarland (H, 11): 1 IP / 2 H / 1 R / 1 ER / 0 BB / 1 K / 0 HR

Garcia: 0.1 IP / 2 H / 2 R / 2 ER / 0 BB / 0 K / 0 HR

Cabrera (H, 26): 0.2 IP / 1 H / 0 R / 0 ER / 0 BB / 0 K / 0 HR

Gallegos (S, 10): 1 IP / 0 H / 0 R / 0 ER / 0 BB / 2 K / 0 HR


Arrieta (L, 5-14): 0.1 IP / 3 H / 5 R / 4 ER / 1 BB / 0 K / 0 HR

Stammen: 3.2 IP / 2 H / 0 R / 0 ER / 0 BB / 3 K / 0 HR

Johnson: 1 IP / 4 H / 2 R / 2 ER / 0 BB / 2 K / 0 HR

Crismatt: 1 IP / 1 H / 0 R / 0 ER / 0 BB / 0 K / 0 HR

Lamet: 1 IP / 1 H / 1 R / 1 ER / 1 BB / 0 K / 0 HR

Hudson: 1 IP / 0 H / 0 R / 0 ER / 0 BB / 1 K / 0 HR