For the second night in a row, a St. Louis Cardinals pitcher out-dueled one of the Washington Nationals stud pitchers.
This time it was Shelby Miller who allowed a run in the first inning -- then shut the Nats down for 6 2/3 frames while Steven Strasburg allowed three runs on eight hits during his 6 2/3 innings of work.
The Redbirds tied the game in the third inning when Miller collected a two-out hit and then scored on a single by Matt Carpenter. In the bottom of the seventh -- also for the second night in a row, Matt Adams slugged a home run to put St. Louis ahead to stay.
Matt Holliday walked with the bases loaded and two outs to give the Cardinals a 3-1 lead and then Allen Craig placed a perfect swinging bunt to drive home another run to provide the final score, 4-1.
Unfortunately for Miller, his strong outing didn't pay off with a win. With one on and two out in the seventh, he pitched around Washington's eighth place hitter to bring the pitcher to the plate. Strasburg drew a walk to load the bases and that was it for Miller. Manager Mike Matheny brought in lefty Randy Choate to face lead-off hitter Denard Span and the southpaw was able to keep the Nationals from regaining the lead.
The Cardinals rallied in the bottom of the inning and it was Choate who got the victory.
The game was a perfect example of how a guy like Lance Lynn uses skill and not luck to rack up wins. It was completely in Miller's hands to stay in the game and be in position to benefit from the rally in the bottom of the seventh. When he walked the pitcher to load the bases and extend the inning, he lost that chance. On Friday Lynn kept himself out of trouble and kept himself in the game. So he was able to get the win.
Miller was excellent and was a big part of the Saturday win. But, with four walks allowed, he wasn't quiiiiiite good enough to secure a W for himself.
Trevor Rosenthal, got his 19th save despite allowing a lead-off walk in the ninth inning. After a slow start, he's whittled his ERA down to 3.58.
Cardinals Star of the Game: Miller
Cardinals Play of the Game: Adams' home run
Lowlight: Catcher Yadier Molina hit the ball hard a couple of times but had nothing to show for it. He stranded five runners on base in an 0-for-4 night and his average sank to .283. Over his last 10 games Molina is batting .154 and has as many strikeouts, 6, as hits.