For Trevor Rosenthal, all good things came to an end Friday night.
Rosenthal’s streak of 23 2/3 scoreless innings in his last 23 appearances came to a halt as he allowed a ninth-inning run in the St. Louis Cardinals’ 2-1 loss to San Diego.
Rosenthal (1-1) had not been scored upon since May 3 against visiting Pittsburgh, when he squandered a save in the ninth inning of a game the Cardinals went on to win 3-2 in 14.
“It’s been a good run,” Rosenthal said. “It was a tough spot to give up one. I wish we would have been up a couple and it wouldn’t have mattered. But it’s always tough putting us in a situation to lose. ... We battled against a good pitcher. It was a good game.”
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It was the Cardinals’ season-high fourth consecutive loss, with all the defeats coming against teams playing under .500. The Cardinals still own the best record in the majors at 51-28.
Cardinals manager Mike Matheny credited Rosenthal for the work he’s done in the tail end of games. The closer has 23 saves and a 0.72 ERA.
“He’s been great,” Matheny said. “He’s been durable. We’ve used him a lot because we’ve been in a lot of games like this. He’s responded well. He’s worked hard to prepare to be ready in these spots and he’s throwing the ball extremely well. One ball that was just out of the reach in the outfield cost him tonight.”
With one out, Yangervis Solarte tripled to right-center, a drive that narrowly eluded the reach of rookie center fielder Tommy Pham. Jedd Gyorko, who hit a game-tying homer against Michael Wacha in the seventh, followed with a single to left to score Solarte and make it 2-1.
Rosenthal said a slider that Gyorko hit for his single “was not a good pitch.”
“It was up,” Rosenthal said. “I tried to go more away with it and down. I just kind of left it up and he was able to get the barrel on it.”
Pham, recalled from Class AAA Memphis before the game, thought he had a chance to catch Solarte’s drive, but the ball carried and one-hopped the wall.
“I was really close, a matter of maybe a foot, glove length,” Pham said. “As soon as it was hit, I just ran as fast as I could to the ball. As I was running, you come to realize you have a chance. (Solarte) split that gap. Right-center is pretty deep here. He touched it pretty good.”
The Cardinals might not have even needed Rosenthal had they executed at the plate. They had the bases loaded with no outs in the fifth inning of a scoreless game against Andrew Cashner, but Xavier Scruggs hit into a double play as a run scored and Tommy Pham grounded out.
“It’s a shame we’re kind of at that point where we’ve got bases loaded, nobody out and you’re almost happy when you get one,” said Matheny, whose team is 1-for-34 with men in scoring position in the last four games. “We’ve had so many swing-and-misses in those situations. Once again, it’s the spot our club is in right now. It happens.”
The Cardinals had another golden opportunity against Joaquin Benoit in the eighth. But with pinch-runner Peter Bourjos on third and one out, pinch-hitter Greg Garcia struck out and Kolten Wong flied out to left.
“When you don’t get the little things done in games like these, it’s not going to work out for you,” Matheny said. “That’s where we are right now. We’ve got too good of an offense for this to continue. We’re going to fix it. It’s a shame to let a few of these slip. ... We had chances, we just couldn’t make it happen.”
Padres 2, Cardinals 1
Yangervis Solarte tripled with one out and Jedd Gyorko followed with an RBI single, both against Trevor Rosenthal, to lift the San Diego Padres over the St. Louis Cardinals 2-1 on Friday at Busch Stadium. The run ended Rosenthal’s streak of 24 scoreless innings and extended the Cardinals’ losing streak to a season-high four games.
Odds and ends
Michael Wacha allowed one run on five hits in seven innings, surrendering a home run to Gyorko in the seventh that made it 1-1. The Cardinals had taken a 1-0 lead in the fifth on Xavier Scruggs double-play ball with the bases loaded against Andrew Cashner. ... Craig Kimbrel pitched the ninth for his 21st save. ... The Cardinals are 1-for-34 with runners in scoring position in their last four games.
Carlos Martinez (9-3, 2.80 ERA) will pitch for the Cardinals against Odrisamer Despaigne (3-6, 4.94 ERA) at 1:15 p.m. Saturday.