Why is it that winning streaks always end in the ugliest way imaginable? Today, it was a brutal 10-3 loss to the Cardinals as Colin Rea hit the first speed bump in his major league career. The Redbirds knocked him out after taking him for five runs in four hits, and then they picked up three more off of long relief man Odrisamer Despaigne. In contrast, St. Louis starter Michael Wacha allowed just a single run on five hits and a pair of walks in six innings of work.
Boy, did this game start off ugly. After walking Tommy Pham, Rea tried to pick him off, but the throw got past Yonder Alonso and Pham went all the way to third. Jhonny Peralta hit a soft liner to third that should have been an inning-ending double play, but Yangervis Solarte couldn't hold onto the ball. A couple more singles scored Peralta, and then Stephen Piscotty followed that up with a two-run triple. After that the Padres finally managed to end the inning and strand Piscotty and third.
Our boys started their comeback in the bottom of the second. With one out, Yonder Alonso singled into left. He'd then move into scoring position when Yadier Molina allowed a passed ball. Austin Hedges drew a walk, and Clint Barmes dropped an RBI single into right. Rea almost kept the rally going with a grounder through the right side of the infield, but Mark Reynolds made a fantastic diving stop to hold the Friars at one run.
Rea would give up one more in the fourth. A leadoff double from Reynolds and a single from Wacha set Matt Carpenter up for an RBI sac fly. The score would stay 5-1 until the disastrous final inning of Despaigne's appearance. After striking out Pham to start the seventh, he beaned Peralta, who scored when Jason Heyward followed that up with a triple. A sac fly from Molina brought Heyward home, and then Stephen Piscotty hit a solo shot to left field to put the Cardinals up by a whopping seven runs. And to add even more insult to injury, Piscotty hit another homer off Craig Kimbrel in the ninth to put St. Louis up 10-1.
The good guys put together a serious comeback attempt in the bottom of the ninth. Brett Wallace led off with a double, and a single from Jedd Gyorko put runners on the corners. After Solarte popped out, Cory Spangenberg took one for the team to load the bases for Matt Kemp. Kemp had gone 0-4 and his hitting streak looked like it was about to end, but he knocked a single up the middle to bring two more runs home. That was the end of the rally, though. Justin Upton struck out, and Brandon Moss made a sharp diving stop to get Yonder Alonso out and end the game.
The team gets a day off tomorrow for the long flight to Washington, DC. James Shields will open the series against the Nationals at 4:10 PM.
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