Tyler O’Neill homered for the third straight game and Miles Mikolas hurled his first career shutout Monday night as the St. Louis Cardinals blanked the hapless Kansas City Royals 6-0 at Busch Stadium in St. Louis.
In becoming the first Cardinal pitcher to start 6-0 since Allen Watson did it 25 years ago, Mikolas allowed only four hits and walked one while fanning nine. Mikolas, who threw 77 of his 109 pitches for strikes, has issued only six walks in 60 1/3 innings over nine starts.
O’Neill, who cracked his first big league homer on Saturday and then walloped his second on Sunday, capped a four-run third inning with a towering three-run shot into the St. Louis bullpen in right-center field. The 388-foot blast scored Jose Martinez and Marcell Ozuna.
Ozuna started the scoring before O’Neill’s blast, poking an RBI single to right to end an 0-for-23 skid. Ozuna, who got a day off Sunday after starting the first 43 games, added another hit in the fifth and scored on O’Neill’s double into the left field corner that made it 5-0.
Carpenter topped off the Cardinals’ 10-hit attack in the seventh with a leadoff homer to right, his fourth of the year. Carpenter enjoyed his second straight three-hit game, raising his average to .210. He was batting an MLB-worst .140 entering Wednesday’s game.
Shortstop Greg Garcia left the contest for the Cardinals with lower-back tightness after hitting a single in the sixth. He was replaced by pinch runner Yairo Munoz.
Ian Kennedy (1-5) absorbed the loss for Kansas City, yielding nine hits and five runs over 5 2/3 innings with one walk and five strikeouts. Kennedy fell to 3-7 in his career against St. Louis, with an ERA of more than 7.00, and has allowed 12 homers in 56 2/3 innings when facing the Cardinals.
Kansas City’s best chance to touch Mikolas came in the first when it got consecutive two-out singles from Mike Moustakas and Salvador Perez. But Mikolas bounced back to fan Whit Merrifield, ending the first by striking out the side.
The night went downhill from there for the Royals, who are 14-33 and have been outscored by an American League-worst 90 runs.
—Field Level Media