EditorsNote: adds word “a” in eighth graf
Carlos Martinez pitched seven strong innings for his third consecutive win and helped his cause with an RBI double as the visiting St. Louis Cardinals made it two of three from the San Francisco Giants on Saturday afternoon with a 3-2 triumph.
All three Cardinals runs came against Giants right-hander Jeff Samardzija (1-5), who was returning from the disabled list to pitch in the majors for the first time since May 29.
Martinez’s double opened the scoring off Samardzija in the third inning after Kolten Wong singled and stole second base.
The Cardinals boosted their lead to 3-0 in the fourth when Dexter Fowler had a sacrifice fly and Francisco Pena an RBI single. Marcell Ozuna and Paul DeJong scored the runs after stroking back-to-back singles with one out.
Samardzija went five innings, allowing three runs and seven hits. He walked one and struck out three.
Brandon Belt drove in both Giants runs, doubling home Gorkys Hernandez in the sixth inning and singling home Alen Hanson in the eighth.
The latter closed the gap to 3-2 before Cardinals setup man Jordan Hicks got Brandon Crawford to ground out to end the inning.
Closer Bud Norris worked a seven-pitch, 1-2-3 ninth inning to record his 17th save.
Martinez (6-4) allowed one run and six hits in his seven innings. He struck out three and did not walk a batter. He’s now beaten Cleveland, Arizona and San Francisco in his past three starts, allowing five runs in 19 innings.
Martinez’s RBI was his fourth of the season, tying him for second in the majors among pitchers behind the Chicago Cubs’ Jon Lester, who has six.
Wong had two hits for the Cardinals, who improved to 4-2 on their nine-game trip.
Belt collected three hits for the Giants, who have lost five of six.
The Giants out-hit the Cardinals 8-7.
—Field Level Media