Every Jordan Montgomery start is an opportunity for St. Louis to increase their return for the lefty when they inevitably trade him in a few weeks. His season ERA has been steadily falling towards 3.00 over the last few starts, and there were — without a doubt — several ballclubs keeping on eye on his start Tuesday night in St. Louis.
Here are the lineups for the Marlins and the Cardinals tonight:
- Luis Arraez, 2B
- Jorge Soler, RF
- Garrett Cooper, DH
- Bryan De La Cruz, LF
- Yuli Gurriel, 1B
- Jean Segura, 3B
- Dane Myers, CF
- Jon Berti, SS
- Jacob Stallings, C
Edward Cabrera - SP
- Brendan Donovan, DH
- Paul Goldschmidt, 1B
- Lars Nootbaar, CF
- Nolan Arenado, 3B
- Willson Contreras, C
- Alec Burleson, LF
- Jordan Walker, RF
- Nolan Gorman, 2B
- Paul DeJong, SS
Jordan Montgomery - SP
Kind of like Monday night, the Marlins took the lead multiple times in this game, but each time the Cardinals were able to scrape up a run to tie it. Despite being no-hit into the fifth inning and outhit 11-6 overall, the Cardinals went into extras against Skip Schumaker’s squad and were able to walk it off in the bottom of the tenth, courtest of Nolan Arenado.
This team is still very much going to be a seller at the deadline, but winning sure beats losing. If they can do this for each of the next eight games, then maybe it’s a different conversation!
An easy 1-2-3 top of the first for Jordan Montgomery. Luis Arraez grounded out to Arenado at third, and then Montgomery struck out Soler and Cooper before jogging back to the dugout.
Brendan Donovan worked a leadoff walk to start the game, but Goldschmidt got sawed off by a 98 mph sinker and grounded into a 4-3 double play. Nootbaar drew a two out walk, and Arenado watched three straight strikes and was rung up to end the inning.
Montgomery tested the “every leadoff walk scores” theory in the second, putting De La Cruz on to start the inning. Yuli Gurriel followed with a base hit to left to put two on with no outs, but Montgomery was able to wiggle out of it. First, Jean Segura tried a sacrifice bunt but popped it up, and Contreras made the play. Myers hit a 100 mph sinking line drive to center that could’ve scored a run, but Nootbaar dove out and made the catch, and both runners held. Berti hit a ground ball right back at Montgomery, who threw over to first to end the inning and strand the runners.
Cabrera was more on his game in the second, putting up a scoreless frame on 11 pitches. Strikeouts of Contreras and Walker were sandwiched around an Alec Burleson groundout.
Stallings — the son of former Pitt Panthers basketball coach Kevin Stallings — led off the third inning and flew out to right. Arraez singled to left field with one out to raise his batting average to .378. But for the second time in the game, Montgomery struck out Soler and Cooper back to back to end the inning.
Nolan Gorman led off the bottom half of the inning and hit a ground ball up the middle. Arraez dove out, made the play, and threw Gorman out at first. Paul DeJong popped out to Stallings in foul territory for the second out, and Donovan flew out to left field to send this game to the fourth.
De La Cruz led off the top of the fourth and ripped a line drive single back up the middle. Gurriel grounded into a 6-4-3 double play to clear the bases and erase the mistake Montgomery had made to De La Cruz a minute earlier. Segura drew a two-out walk, and Myers’ ground ball up the middle was snagged by Gorman going to his right, before spinning and throwing the speedy outfielder out at first off his back leg.
Cabrera walked Goldschmidt on seven pitches to start the fourth. Nootbaar grounded into a fielder’s choice at second, with Arraez tagging Goldschmidt going to second for the first out. Arenado struck out swinging for the second out, but Nootbaar stole second as well. Contreras grounded out to end the inning, and St. Louis was still hitless through four innings.
Jon Berti led off the fifth with a drive off the right field wall, and Nootbaar did not play it well off the wall. It charomed off the bullpen gate and rolled back towards center field, where Nootbaar chased it down and got it back to the infield. Berti easily had a triple, and probably could have pushed it for an inside-the-park home run.... but he held at third.
Montgomery struck out Stallings for the first out, but Arraez came through with a sac fly to center field to get Miami on the board first, 1-0. Soler flew out to center field for the third out, sending it to the bottom of the fifth.
Burleson led off and chopped a slow bouncer to Segura at third, who charged it and attempted a barehanded play. His throw went over the head of Gurriel, which allowed Burleson to advance to second base — it was ruled a hit and an error on Segura, which meant Cabrera’s no-hitter was officially over.
Walker popped out for the first out on the first pitch he saw. Gorman took ball four outside in a 3-1 count, but home plate umpire Tony Randazzo called it strike two, and Gorman struck out on the next pitch. Yikes.
DeJong struck out swinging as well to end the fifth. St. Louis was unable to do anything despite the leadoff man getting into scoring position with no outs.
Garrett Cooper led off in the sixth and ripped a 111 mph comebacker right off of Montgomery’s leg and the ball rolled towards the first base line. Contreras jumped on it and underhand flipped the ball to first for the out. However, video replay showed that Cooper beat the throw, and a Miami challenge overturned the play for Cooper — the Marlins’ fifth hit of the game.
De La Cruz flew out to Nootbaar for the first out of the inning. Gurriel capped off a six-pitch at bat with a line drive single to left field, just out of reach of a diving Paul DeJong. But Montgomery buckled down with two runners on and got out of the jam.
Segura’s 108 mph line drive was caught by Nootbaar in center for the second out, and it was hit so hard that neither runner was able to tag. Myers grounded out to Gorman at second to end the top of the sixth.
Cabrera faced Donovan first in the bottom of the sixth, and hung a 2-1 slider over the middle of the plate that I’m sure he wish he had back. Donovan continued his recent tear by taking it 388 feet into the St. Louis bullpen for his 11th home run of the year, tying things up 1-1 in the bottom of the sixth.
Skip Schumaker went and took the ball from Cabrera, as the young right-hander was making his first start in over a month since coming off the injured list. Right-hander JT Chargois entered the game to face Goldschmidt, who grounded out to short. Nootbaar struck out, Arenado worked a two-out walk, and Contreras grounded out to end the sixth inning.
Cabrera’s final line: 5 IP, 2 H, 1 ER, 3 BB, 6 K (74 pitches)
Montgomery’s final line: 6 IP, 6 H, 1 ER, 2 BB, 5 K (92 pitches)
Chris Stratton entered the game in the top of the seventh, and Berti immediately ripped a single to right field for his second hit of the game. Stallings struck out swinging, but Berti easily stole second base on the swing and miss — his tenth steal of the season after he swiped 41 last season. Stratton then threw a 1-0 changeup to Arraez that got away from Contreras, and Berti easily advanced to third base with the best contact hitter in the game at the plate and only one out.
Against all odds, Stratton was able to strike out Arraez with an inside slider for the second out of the inning. It was only Arraez’s 21st strikeout of the season (in nearly 400 at-bats). But the Marlins still scored, as Jorge Soler broke his bat on a flare single to center field to score Berti and put Miami up 2-1. Stratton struck out Cooper to end the top of the seventh.
Miami brought in left-hander Steven Okert to face Burleson, so St. Louis pinch-hit Dylan Carlson for him. Carlson worked a six-pitch walk. Jordan Walker struck out, but go-ahead Gorman came through with a deep double into the right-center field gap that scored Carlson from first base to tie things up, 2-2.
Miami brought in lefty Tanner Scott next, and he struck out DeJong on three pitchs and got Donovan to ground out to end the inning and strand Gorman there on second base as the potential go-ahead run.
Giovanny Gallegos took the eighth, pitching on two consecutive days. De La Cruz led off and grounded out to Gorman at second base. Gurriel laced a 2-2 fastball into right center field, but was robbed off extra bases by Carlson — who entered the game for Burleson — in center field with a sliding catch. Segura poked a two-out single up the middle off Gallegos, but Myers struck out swinging for the third out.
Scott returned for the bottom of the eighth and struck out Goldschmidt and Nootbaar, but Arenado dropped a two-out single into left field. Contreras struck out to end the inning.
Jordan Hicks took over in the top of the ninth and ran into some trouble. Berti hit a ground ball back to him, but the ball bounced off his glove and slowly rolled towards second base for an infield single. Miami pinch-hit Joey Wendle for Stallings, and he ripped a base hit to center field, with the speedy Berti moving to third base with nobody out.
Hicks struck out Arraez on three pitches, marking the first time all season that the NL’s leading hitter has struck out two times in the same games. That brought up Soler, who hit a high bouncer to Hicks’ left. The Cardinals’ closer stepped to his left, reached up to grab it, and then threw home to get Berti at the plate for the second out. Soler reached at first, and Wendle got to second with two down. Hicks struck out Cooper on three pitches to some how, some way escape the first and third, no out jam he got himself into.
Dominican right-hander Huascar Brozoban entered the game in the bottom of the ninth in a tie game. Carlson hit a ball over 100 mph to center field, but Myers settled under it just short of the warning track for the first out. Walker hit a ground ball deep into the hole between short and third, and it just trickled off the glove of Berti into left field for a one-out single. Gorman struck out swinging and DeJong struck out as well — and for the third time in the game — to send this game to extra innings.
Garrett Hampson replaced Garrett Cooper at second base as the Manfred man to start the 10th, and JoJo Romero took over on the mound. He struck out De La Cruz and Gurriel, and then got Segura to ground out to send this game to the bottom of the tenth. All St. Louis needed to do was score that runner from second base.
A.J. Puk took over, trying to hold the game and send it to the 11th. Donovan led off and flew out to shallow right field, meaning DeJong couldn’t even advance to third base. Miami intentionally walked Goldschmidt, which brought up Nootbaar and set up a more favorable lefty-lefty matchup. Noot grounded into a fielder’s choice at second base, with Segura throwing over to Arraez for the second out. That brought up Arenado with the winning run standing at third base.
He didn’t just score that one runner. He scored that one, and Goldschmidt, and himself, too!
Walk-off three-run homer into the left field seats off Puk. Ballgame.
FINAL: Cardinals 5, Marlins 2
The Cardinals (42-53) go for a sweep of the Marlins (53-44) tomorrow afternoon at Busch. Reigning NL Cy Young Award winner and former Cardinal farmhand Sandy Alcantara (3-8, 4.64 ERA) will toe the tubber for Miami. St. Louis had not announced a starter for tomorrow when today’s game commenced. First pitch is set for 1:15 p.m. tomorrow.
Around the Central
Giants 4, Reds 2
Guardians 10, Pirates 1
Cubs 15, Nationals 3 - BOT 8
Reds 8, Giants 8 - BOT 6