Royal Arms Shut Down Redbirds in Sweep
The Kansas City Royals entered play in St. Louis on Tuesday facing a depleted team without their biggest offensive threat, and it showed. The Cardinals mustered only four runs at home in the 3 game set.
On Tuesday, St. Louis was given a quality start by Joel Pineiro in his return allowing just one run on 7 hits through 7 strong innings. Royals’ pitcher Kyle Davies matched his efforts lasting 7 innings giving up only one earned run. The game was tied 1-1 until the Royals got to the Cardinals bullpen in the 8 th. Royals’ shortstop Mike Avile hit a solo shot off of Ryan Villone, which ended up being the winning run.
After managing only 5 hits on the previous day the Cards would look to produce more offense on Wednesday. St. Louis would answer with an 11 hit performance against Brian Bannister and would take a 2-0 lead late into the game before Kansas City would once again exploit the Cardinal bullpen. Kyle McClellan would give up 2 home runs in 1.0 IP and take a blown save and the loss. Brian Bannister improved to 6-6 with the win.
The Cardinals looked to salvage one game in the series finale and handed the ball to Brad Thompson. The Cardinals offense would again be a no show. Rick Ankiel’s 11th homer of the season in the 4th off of Zack Greinke would be the only highlight of the game for the Redbirds as Greinke, Ramirez, and closer Joakim Soria would combine efforts for a 2 hitter. Thompson dropped to 1-2 after the loss while Greinke improved to 6-4.
It won’t get any easier for St. Louis as they fly into Boston for a weekend series at Fenway. The pitching matchups certainly favor the Red Sox after Kyle Lohse (8-2) and veteran Tim Wakefield (4-4) open the series up. Rookie Mitchell Boggs (1-0) will have the face Daisuke Matsuzaka (8-2) before Joel Pineiro (2-3) looks for more run support against Jon Lester (6-3) who recently threw a no-hitter.
Cardinals Notes: One positive the Cardinals can feed on from the Kansas City series is relief pitcher Jason Isringhausen made 2 appearances throwing shut out ball. Isringhausen threw 3 1/3 innings in the series giving up no runs on just 2 hits and issuing zero walks.
By Zack Estes
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