MLB Baseball

5
Final 1 2 3   4 5 6   7 8 9   R H E
St. Louis0 0 0 0 1 0 4 0 0 581
San Diego1 1 0 0 1 0 0 1 0 460
4
  W: J. Flaherty (1-1)   L: N. Martinez (4-4)   S: G. Gallegos (14)
1:10 PM PT2:10 PM MT3:10 PM CT4:10 PM ET16:10 ET20:10 GMT4:10 1:10 PM MST3:10 PM EST3:40 PM VEN0:10 UAE (+1)2:10 PM CT, September 22, 2022
Petco Park, San Diego, California  Attendance: 33,389

Cardinals search for missing offense against Padres

According to STATS
According to STATS

St. Louis Cardinals at San Diego Padres

  1. Dating back to last season, the Cardinals have won their last six games against the Padres. This is their longest winning streak versus the Padres since they won six consecutive games in 2016. The Cards have not had a longer winning streak against them since 2008-09 (nine games).
  2. Beginning tonight, the Cardinals will play 11 of their last 14 games this season on the road while the Padres finish their 2022 schedule with 12 of 15 games at home. St. Louis has a 36-34 road record this season and San Diego is 38-31 at home.
  3. Nolan Arenado has recorded 100 or more RBI in a season six times in his MLB career and he has 98 runs batted in this season. The only other player with as many 100-RBI seasons as Arenado since 2013 (his debut year) is Jose Abreu (also six).
  4. Mike Clevinger is 0-2 with a 10.13 ERA and six home runs allowed in 13.1 innings in his three starts this month. Clevinger's September ERA is the highest in the majors among starters who have made at least three starts this month.
  5. Juan Soto ended his season-high 58-at-bat homerless streak with a fifth-inning home run in the Padres' win at Arizona on Sunday. Soto has hit four home runs and driven in 12 runs in the 38 games he's played for San Diego, the identical totals teammate Trent Grisham has recorded over the same span despite his .154 batting average since August 3.
  6. Adam Wainwright, who turned 41 years old on August 30, is making his 30th start of the season tonight. (He started 32 games last year but only six after his 40th birthday.) Before today, Hall of Famer Pete Alexander was the only pitcher to start 30 or more games for the Cardinals in a season at age 40 or older (doing so in 1927 and 1928).
Notes Applicable For Series Dates: 9/20/2022 thru 9/22/2022
(AP Photo/Gregory Bull)

San Diego Padres manager Bob Melvin noted recently that teams in wild-card races have an edge going into the postseason because they are already playing postseason-style baseball.

"Division winners might already have things wrapped up in the final weeks," Melvin said then. "Wild-card teams are usually fighting to the end of the regular season. That means they're already in playoff footing."

At the time, Melvin was hoping his struggling Padres would hit a hot streak that would carry them into the postseason. His wish might have been answered, as San Diego is on a roll.

The Padres hope to complete a three-game sweep of the National League Central-leading St. Louis Cardinals on Thursday in San Diego.

The Padres have outscored the opposition 26-4 in a five-game winning streak. Their starting pitchers have worked 27 straight scoreless innings -- the longest such streak in the major leagues this season. Three of the five wins in the streak have come on shutouts, including two straight against the Cardinals.

Five of San Diego's six runs in the series have scored on two-out hits, perhaps the biggest gain for a team that has struggled with runners in scoring position throughout most of the season.

"I think this is some of the best baseball we've played this season," Melvin said. "We had a stretch earlier in the season when we were playing like this, getting big hits, winning close games ... fast-paced games. Hopefully, it's good timing that we're starting to play again like this.

"When you talk about similarities to stretches during the season where we've played well, it starts with our starting pitching. That's the common denominator."

On Thursday, the Padres will send Joe Musgrove (10-7, 3.16 ERA) to the mound against the Cardinals' Jack Flaherty (0-1, 5.09) in a match of right-handers.

The Cardinals (87-63) have been shut out in three straight losses -- following a 1-0 win. One run in four games. The three-game scoreless string is St. Louis' longest since the last three games of the 2015 regular season.

"We've pitched well enough to win those games," Cardinals manager Oliver Marmol said after the Wednesday defeat. "The one run tonight followed an error. We've had seven hits in two games here."

Which raises an interesting question. Typically, Albert Pujols -- who is stuck on 698 home runs -- gets the day game after a night game off on the road. But Pujols has three of the Cardinals' seven hits the past two nights and broke up Blake Snell's no-hit bid with a two-out single in the seventh inning on Wednesday.

In addition, Pujols is 3-for-9 with a home run in his career against Musgrove. The slugger is hitless in three career at-bats vs. Padres closer Josh Hader.

Musgrove didn't pitch when the Cardinals swept a three-game series in St. Louis from May 30-June 1. He is 2-7 lifetime against the Cardinals with a 5.53 ERA, a 1.416 WHIP and a .260 opponents' batting average in 10 starts.

Flaherty will make his fourth start since returning from the 60-day injured list after recovering from a shoulder ailment. He went 0-1 with a 4.80 ERA in prior three outings.

He also will make his fourth career start against the Padres, although he hasn't opposed them since 2019. Flaherty is 1-0 with a 1.10 ERA and 16 strikeouts in 16 1/3 career innings vs. San Diego.

--Field Level Media

Updated September 22, 2022

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