|4:45 PM PT5:45 PM MT6:45 PM CT7:45 PM ET19:45 ET23:45 GMT7:45 4:45 PM MST6:45 PM EST7:15 PM VEN3:45 UAE (+1)6:45 PM CT, September 3, 2019
Busch Stadium, St. Louis, Missouri Attendance: 38,259
Flaherty to take hot run into Cardinals' test vs. Giants
The St. Louis Cardinals jumped into their four-game series against the San Francisco Giants unfazed by the grind of back-to-back doubleheaders against the Cincinnati Reds.
The Cardinals beat the Giants 3-1 on Monday for their fourth victory in five games -- all of them completed within a 51-hour period.
"They brought it every single pitch, all five games," Cardinals manager Mike Shildt told reporters of his players after the game.
Now, the Cardinals send one of their top starting pitchers, Jack Flaherty, against the Giants on Tuesday night at Busch Stadium for the second game of the series.
Flaherty (8-7, 3.31 ERA) has been one of baseball's hottest pitchers during the second half of the season. He was 4-1 with a 0.71 ERA and 47 strikeouts in 38 innings in six August starts. And in nine starts since the break, he has a 0.98 ERA over 55 1/3 innings.
Flaherty is 0-1 with a 6.08 ERA in three career starts against the Giants. But he pitched well in his last game against them, a 1-0 loss July 7.
The Giants will counter with starting pitcher Dereck Rodriguez (5-7, 5.49), who struggled in his last two starts. He allowed 11 runs on 14 hits, including four homers, in just nine innings during matchups with the Chicago Cubs and San Diego Padres.
In two career starts against the Cardinals he has no record and a 4.26 ERA.
The Cardinals didn't burn up their bullpen during their five-game marathon. They played clean baseball throughout and came away with only one minor injury, a strained calf muscle by backup catcher Matt Wieters.
"Actions speak louder than words. I'm really proud of this group," Shildt said. "Not surprised in the least. You saw zero decline in effort mentally and physically. It speaks to their habits and their competitive desire."
Adam Wainwright, the winning Cardinals pitcher Monday, said the five-game challenge got the team focused.
"It seemed like it almost locked us in almost," Wainwright told reporters. "Everybody realized what we had coming up and took it very seriously, everyone kept their energy levels up, recovered between games really well, put the time in, got a couple naps in between games. That's the most energy I've seen from a team in that short of time."
The Cardinals have won 19 of their last 24 games. They were stuck in neutral at 44-44 at the All-Star break, but they have gone 33-16 since then.
They lead the National League Central by three games over the second-place Chicago Cubs.
The Giants, meanwhile, have lost six of their last seven games and the 10 of their last 13 to fade from the NL wild card race.
They added Andrew Suarez and Kyle Barraclough to their bullpen Monday and put both to work right away. Barraclough, a former Miami Marlins closer, will be an ongoing reclamation project for the Giants this month.
"They presented some analytical stuff when I first got here that I've been trying to utilize as much as possible, and I've seen good results the last four or five outings," Barraclough told the San Francisco Chronicle after his promotion from Triple-A Sacramento. "It's basically throwing more off speed. I got really fastball reliant early in the year and probably wasn't utilizing my breaking ball and changeup as much as I should."
--Field Level Media
Updated September 3, 2019