EditorsNote: Changed spelling of “betters” to “batters” in ninth graf; other minor fixes
Marcell Ozuna homered and drove in five runs as the host St. Louis Cardinals posted a 6-3 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Saturday afternoon.
Harrison Bader had a pinch-hit RBI single and Yadier Molina and Paul Goldschmidt extended their respective hit streaks to 14 and 13 games for the Cardinals, who won for the sixth time in seven games.
Dakota Hudson (2-1) won his second straight start by allowing three runs on seven hits in 5 2/3 innings. Two relievers bridged the gap to Jordan Hicks, who retired the side in order in the ninth to secure his eighth save.
Jose Peraza and Eugenio Suarez each had an RBI single and Derek Dietrich added a sacrifice fly for the Reds, who fell for the third time in nine games.
St. Louis answered Cincinnati’s two-run third with one big swing in the bottom of the inning.
Matt Carpenter walked and Goldschmidt singled before Ozuna hit a first-pitch fastball from starter Tyler Mahle (0-3) over the wall in left-center field to give the Cardinals a 3-2 lead. Ozuna’s team-leading 10 homers before the start of May trail only Albert Pujols’ 14 in 2006 and Mark McGwire’s 11 in 1998 for the most in franchise history.
A two-out walk to Goldschmidt in the fifth inning proved costly for Mahle, who gave up an infield single to Paul DeJong before Ozuna drilled an 0-1 slider off the wall in right field for a two-run double. Ozuna’s big hits staked St. Louis to a 5-2 lead and boosted his RBI total to 26 in 25 games.
Reliever Zach Duke hit two batters before Bader singled to right to score Dexter Fowler and give the Cardinals a 6-3 advantage in the sixth inning.
Cincinnati opened the scoring in the top of the third inning as Peraza singled to left field to score Scott Schebler. Peraza came around to score after Suarez’s bloop single landed just inside the right field line, but the Reds’ bid for a third run was thwarted as Fowler threw out Suarez at the plate.
—Field Level Media