Cardinals 4-1 Braves (Jun 26, 2024) Game Recap - ESPN (2024)

ByAP

Updated: Jun 26, 2024, 10:40 pm

ST. LOUIS -- — Matthew Liberatore pitched six shutout innings in a spot start and Alec Burleson hit a go-ahead, two-run double to lead the St. Louis Cardinals over the Atlanta Braves 4-1 Wednesday for a day-night doubleheader split.

Jarred Kelenic had three hits, including his eighth home run, and three RBI as the Braves won the opener 6-2. Kelenic was 6 for 9 with four RBI in the doubleheader and is hitting .362 (17 for 47) with four homers and 10 RBI since being moved to the leadoff spot in the batting order following Ronald Acuña Jr.’s season-ending knee injury.

Liberatore (2-2) gave up two hits and struck out eight in his fifth start of the season. He got the spot start following Tuesday night’s rainout.

“Probably the most fun I’ve had on the baseball field this year,” Liberatore said. “I found a rhythm there early on and tried to continue to trust myself and not get outside of what I do.”

St. Louis manager Oliver Marmol said before the game he would have been satisfied with four or five good innings from Liberatore.

“He was incredible tonight,” Marmol said. “He was in control that whole outing. It was a best-case scenario.” Libertore, who has 22 appearances out of the bullpen this season, set a career high with eight strikeouts. It was his longest outing since going eight innings at Tampa Bay last Aug. 10.

“Slider and cutter were both really good for me tonight,” Liberatore said. “I was kind of able to keep guys off the fastball and mix it in enough to keep guys guessing.”

St. Louis reliever Chris Roycroft, who was designated as the 27th man on the roster for the twinbill, followed Liberatore with a 1-2-3 seventh inning.

“Every opportunity is a learning experience and I was happy to be in this situation,” Roycroft said.

Burleson put the Cardinals ahead 2-0 in the third off Bryce Elder (1-3), who was recalled from Triple-A Gwinnett. An NL All-Star last season, Elder allowed two runs and five hits in six innings.

Michael Siani and Masyn Winn had two-out singles before Burleson lined the ball into the right-field corner for his 27th hit in June.

Burleson has driven in at least one run in each of his last five games.

Paul Goldschmidt and Brendan Donovan added run-scoring singles off Grant Holmes in the eighth.

Closer Ryan Helsley struck out Adam Duvall with two on for his major league-leading 28th save in 29 chances, his 28th in a row.

St. Louis has won 10 of its last 14 and improved to a NL-best 26-14 since May 12.

“These guys are locked in,” Marmol said. “They’re not giving away a whole lot.”

Kelenic had a run-scoring hit with two-out in the eighth off JoJo Romero after hitting a two-run homer in the sixth inning of the opener.

Reynaldo López (6-2) improved to 4-0 in his last five starts, allowing two runs and four hits in five innings.

After Ramón Laureano hit into a run-scoring forceout, Zack Short had a two-run single in a four-run second that included Kelenic’s RBI single. Matt Carpenter hit a sacrifice fly in the bottom half, and Alec Burleson had a sacrifice fly in the fifth.

Kelenic’s homer was the first allowed by Kyle Leahy in 17 appearances and 28 1/3 innings this season.

TRAINERS ROOM

Braves: Orlando Arcia (dizziness) missed both games after being removed in the sixth inning Monday night. ... 3B Brian Anderson was put on the 10-day IL Tuesday with a bacterial infection, retroactive to Sunday. ... LHP AJ Minter (left hip inflammation) moved to Triple-A Gwinnett on his rehab assignment.

Cardinals: INF/OF Tommy Edman, working his way back from offseason right wrist surgery, sprained an ankle while fielding ground balls on Tuesday. ... OF Lars Nootbaar (oblique strain) took batting practice on the field for the first time Tuesday, and reported no ill effects. He could start a rehab assignment this weekend.

UP NEXT

Braves: LHP Chris Sale (10-2, 2.91) is to start Thursday as the Chicago White Sox. Chicago, his team from 2010-16, started RHP Drew Thorpe (1-1, 5.02)

Cardinals: RHP Miles Mikolas (6-6, 4.68 ERA) starts Thursday’s opener against visiting Cincinnati and LHP Andrew Abbott (6-6, 3.40).

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AP MLB: https://apnews.com/hub/mlb

Cardinals 4-1 Braves (Jun 26, 2024) Game Recap - ESPN (2024)

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