CINCINNATI — With their hitting slump a thing of the past, the Cardinals can relax and focus on getting back into first place.
It’s only a half-game away.
David Freese set the tone with a bases-loaded double in the first inning, and Daniel Descalso hit two of the Cardinals’ three homers on Friday night as St. Louis pulled away to a 13-3 victory over the Cincinnati Reds.
The Cardinals have emerged from a deep hitting slump by scoring 13 runs in each of their last two games. It’s the first time this season they’ve had double-digit run totals in consecutive games.
“Our guys put so much pressure on themselves,” Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. “They’re perfectionists. It was frustrating for a quite a few days. It was good to see some energy. I hope we can keep riding it.”
While the Cardinals have emerged from their hitting slump, the Reds are still stuck in theirs.
Shelby Miller (11-7) limited Cincinnati to two singles over the first five innings before Joey Votto hit a three-run homer in the sixth. The Reds managed only six hits, five of them singles. They’ve been held to three or fewer runs in six of their last seven games.
“I felt really good,” Miller said. “That was some of the best stuff I had all year. I kind of let it get away from me in the sixth inning. I guess I kind of lost my focus, which is something that shouldn’t let happen.”
In every respect, it was a night the Reds wanted to forget.
“This is a game that depends upon how short a memory you have,” outfielder Jay Bruce said.
Bronson Arroyo (9-9) matched his season high by giving up seven runs in only 3 2-3 innings, his shortest outing of the season.