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Five consecutive two-out hits produced four runs in the third inning and carried Jack Flaherty and the Cardinals to the win over the Royals Saturday night in Kansas City.
The rally started with two outs and nobody on base when Yadier Molina doubled, followed by a single by Jose Martinez, a triple by Marcell Ozuna, a double by Paul DeJong and a single by Jedd Gyorko.
That was all of the runs Flaherty needed as he shut down the Royals on three hits over seven innings.
The win guaranteed the Cardinals of winning their fifth consecutive series and moved them to seven games over .500 for the first time since June 12. Their best record of the season was eight games over .500, on June 11.
Here is how the game broke down:
At the plate: Matt Carpenter extended his streak of reaching base to 29 consecutive games when he reached on a walk … Harrison Bader homered for the second consecutive game, his eighth of the season. His two-run shot in the sixth increased the Cardinals’ lead to 6-2 before Jose Martinez added a two-run blast in the ninth, his 14th of the season. It was the seventh time this season Martinez has driven in three or more runs in a game.
On the mound: One of the three hits off Flaherty was a two-run homer by Alcides Escobar in the fifth. Flaherty walked three and struck out nine over his seven innings as he evened his record at 6-6 … The bullpen’s streak of 13 consecutive scoreless innings ended in the eighth on a wild pitch by Dakota Hudson … Jordan Hicks got the final four outs, allowing one hit, to earn his third save.
Key stat: This is the first time this season the Cardinals have scored seven or more runs in three consecutive games.
Worth noting: A wrist injury to Yairo Munoz opened a spot on the roster for Patrick Wisdom, who was promoted to the major leagues for the first time in his career after playing 747 games in the minor leagues since he was drafted in 2012 … Munoz went on the DL because of a sprained wrist suffered in Friday night’s game … To open a spot on the 40-man roster, the Cardinals transferred Luke Gregerson from the 10-day DL to the 60-day disabled list, ending his season … To replace Wisdom in Memphis the Cardinals promoted Tommy Edman from Springfield.
Looking ahead: Luke Weaver will get the start on Sunday as the Cardinals try to complete a sweep of the three-game series. It’s also the final game of the nine-game road trip.
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