Right-hander Jack Flaherty struck out 10 in eight scoreless innings to lead the visiting St. Louis Cardinals to a 2-0 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Sunday.
Flaherty (10-7) allowed five hits and walked one, and he has been strong as the Cardinals look to lock down the National League Central title. The eight shutout innings matched a career best he set in his previous start against San Francisco, and those two outings came after he was named the NL Pitcher of the Month for August.
Carlos Martinez pitched the ninth for his 19th save.
Paul Goldschmidt had an RBI double and Harrison Bader an RBI single for St. Louis, which took two of three in the weekend series.
Pittsburgh had won six of nine, but the Cardinals have been a nemesis. St. Louis is 14-5 against the Pirates this year, including 11-2 since the All-Star break.
Pirates starter James Marvel (0-1) had a solid major league debut but could not match Flaherty. Marvel allowed only one runner, on a walk, through 3 2/3 innings and just one hit through four innings. He went five-plus innings, giving up two runs and four hits, with two strikeouts and two walks.
Marvel was summoned last week and activated Sunday after Pittsburgh’s Mitch Keller left a start when he got hit in his throwing hand with a line drive.
Pittsburgh center fielder Starling Marte left Sunday after apparently injuring his left wrist making a catch in the ninth.
The Cardinals took a 1-0 lead in the fifth. Carpenter hit a one-out double to left and scored on Bader’s base hit to shallow left.
In the sixth, Marvel walked Kolten Wong. Goldschmidt drove in Wong with a double to right-center to make it 2-0 and chase Marvel. Relief pitcher Yacksel Rios came in and set down three St. Louis batters in a row.
Pittsburgh manager Clint Hurdle and second baseman Adam Frazier were ejected in the seventh for arguing with home plate umpire Roberto Ortiz over balls and strikes calls.
—Field Level Media