Second baseman Greg Garcia hit two home runs and drove in three runs and right-hander Miles Mikolas breezed through seven innings Saturday afternoon as the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Cincinnati Reds 6-1 at Great American Ball Park in Cincinnati.
Garcia, the only left-handed hitter in the Cardinals’ starting lineup against left-hander Brandon Finnegan, hit a solo home run to right field in the second inning to extend the St. Louis lead to 2-0, then clubbed a two-run homer to right with two outs in the fourth inning to make it a 4-0 game.
Mikolas (2-0), in his third start of the season, needed only 83 pitches to help send the Reds to their seventh straight loss and 12th in their first 14 games. He gave up just four hits and two walks, while striking out four.
The Reds’ only run came on a home run to right field by catcher Tucker Barnhart, who before the game received his 2017 Rawlings Gold Glove Award trophy.
Finnegan (0-1), making his season debut after dealing with biceps tenderness in his left arm near the end of spring training, struggled badly. He gave up five runs on six hits with four walks. He threw 91 pitches in 4 1/3 innings and struck out four.
The Cardinals scored a first-inning run on a sacrifice fly by Marcell Ozuna that drove in Tommy Pham, who had walked to lead off the game. In the fifth inning, Jose Martinez doubled to drive in Pham, who had singled for one of his three hits.
Against Reds reliever Austin Brice in the sixth inning, Garcia doubled for his third hit of the day and scored on a double by Pham.
Scooter Gennett had three singles for half of Cincinnati’s six hits. The Reds have scored only 42 runs in their 14 games this season.
Cardinals relievers Greg Holland and rookie Jordan Hicks each threw a scoreless inning.
Holland gave up one hit in the eighth inning.
The Reds loaded the bases against Hicks in the ninth on a single by Gennett, an error by Cardinals third baseman Yairo Munoz and a walk to Phillip Ervin, but Hicks struck out Cliff Pennington looking and got rookie Alex Blandino to fly out to end the game.
—Field Level Media