The St. Louis Cardinals brutally defeated the New York Mets by a score of 6-2 Monday night at Busch Stadium. It was New York’s 11th loss in their last 16 games.
In his major league debut Cardinal reliever Nick Greenwood picked up the win. Greenwood pitched 3 1/3 innings of relief, allowing just one run to back up fellow rookie Carlos Martinez. Martinez came out of the bullpen to make his first start of the season and allowed one run on two hits. He walked four batters and struck out three in his four innings. Reliever Seth Maness notched his first save of the year preserving the win for the Cardinals.
Mets rookie pitcher Jacob deGrom, who has struggled his last three starts, took a pounding, giving up six runs on 12 hits in the loss, dropping to 0-4 on the season. When the Mets revealed their starting lineup, deGrom was batting in the eighth position, the first time in Mets franchise history a pitcher has batted anywhere but ninth.
Before the game the Mets announced that outfielder Eric Young Jr. was recalled from the 15-day disabled list and outfielder Andrew Brown would be sent down to AAA Las Vegas.
After the Mets went in order in the top of the first, Cardinals third baseman Matt Carpenter led off the bottom half of the first by lining out to center for the first out. Centerfielder Jon Jay followed with a walk. Left fielder Matt Holliday then lined a single to center. Right fielder Allen Craig singled past a diving Lucas Duda at first and into right field for a single, scoring Jay to give the Cardinals an early 1-0 lead. First baseman Matt Adams then grounded into a double play and the inning was over. The Mets were retired 1-2-3 in the top of the second and the Cardinals failed to score in the bottom of the second.
Shortstop Ruben Tejada walked to lead off the top of the third and Jacob deGrom laid down a sacrifice bunt to advance Tejada over to second. Left fielder Eric Young Jr. grounded a pitch to Cardinals shortstop Jhonny Peralta. Peralta gathered the ball but rushed the throw and the ball got away from Matt Adams at first and Young took second on the errant throw while Tejada advanced to third. The play was scored as both a hit and an error (the speedy Young likely would have beat the throw, but the error allowed him to take second). Centerfielder Curtis Granderson then skied a ball to center for the second out, but Tejada scored to tie the game at 1-1. Carlos Martinez then uncorked a wild pitch, allowing Young to move over to third. Second baseman Daniel Murphy followed with a walk, but third baseman David Wright struck out swinging to retire the side.
Matt Carpenter grounded out to second leading off the bottom of the third. Jon Jay lined a single to right, and Matt Holliday flied out to right. Allen Craig lined a single to left advancing Carpenter to third. Matt Adams then lined a single to right, scoring Jay to make it 2-1 St. Louis. Catcher Yadier Molina followed by grounding a ball between the hole between short and third and into left field. Craig raced around third and towards home plate. Eric Young grabbed the ball and threw to home. The ball beat Craig home and Mets catcher Taylor Teagarden tagged him out to end the inning.
In the top of the fourth, right fielder Bobby Abreu led off with a walk. First baseman Lucas Duda then ripped a ground ball past a diving Matt Adams at first, and it rolled all the way to the wall in right field. Duda landed safely at second with a double with Abreu at third. Teagarden popped out to second for the first out. Ruben Tejada was intentionally walked to load the bases. Jacob deGrom lined a shot but right at Cardinals second baseman Colton Wong who caught it for the second out. Eric Young Jr. then struck out swinging to retire the side. Both teams went in order in their next at-bats.
Matt Carpenter started the bottom of the fifth by striking out swinging. Jon Jay then lined a double to center. Matt Holliday followed by lining a single to center, Jay scored to extend the Cardinals lead to 3-1. The RBI was the thousandth of Holliday’s career. After a short delay to celebrate the milestone, Allen Craig ripped a double down the left field line, scoring Holliday to lengthen the Cardinals lead to 4-1. Matt Adams followed by hitting a fly ball that fell into the corner in right field. Craig scored and Adams slid into third with a triple making it 5-1 Cardinals. Yadier Molina was walked, and Jhonny Peralta lined a single to right, scoring Adams to stretch the Cardinals lead to 6-1. deGrom was pulled and in came lefty reliever Dana Eveland.
Kolton Wong grounded to short and Peralta was forced out at second. Nick Greenwood then grounded out to third to end the inning. Both teams went 1-2-3 for the next two innings.
Leading off the top of the eighth Curtis Granderson flied out to left. Daniel Murphy and David Wright then both lined singles. That would end Nick Greenwood’s day and in came lefty specialist Randy Choate.
Outfielder Chris Young was called to pinch-hit for Bobby Abreu and Young bounced a ball past a diving Matt Carpenter at third and into left field, scoring Murphy to make it 6-2 St. Louis. Lucas Duda struck out swinging and in came reliever Seth Maness. Matt den Dekker pinch-hit for Taylor Teagarden and grounded out to short to retire the side. Both teams were retired 1-2-3 in their next at bats and the game was over.
The two teams return to action tomorrow night, when lefty ace Jonathan Niese takes the mound for the Mets while rookie lefty Michael Wacha goes for the Cardinals.