Springfield, MO – CF Nick Martini blasted a go-ahead grand slam in the seventh inning to propel the 1st-Half North Division Champion Springfield Cardinals to the 6-2 win against the Tulsa Drillers before 4,941 fans at Hammons Field on Tuesday night. The Cardinals have gone 5-1 on the homestand and have guaranteed their third straight series win with back-to-back victories against Tulsa.
St. Louis Cardinals All-Star INF Matt Carpenter continued to put on a show, providing the game-tying solo home run in the fifth inning on Tuesday. Carpenter is expected to wrap up his Rehab Assignment at Hammons Field as the Cardinals close the homestand on Wednesday, August 3 at 6:30pm.
After a scoreless top of the first from RHP Luke Weaver (W, 6-3), the Cardinals (18-21, 59-50) charged in front in the bottom of the first against RHP Jeremy Kehrt. With two down, CF Nick Martini reached on an infield single that hit off of Kehrt and led to a two-base throwing error when Kehrt misfired a throw past first base. With Martini all the way at third base and two outs, 1B Luke Voit ripped an RBI single up the middle, bringing in Martini for the 1-0 lead for the Cardinals.
Weaver kept the Drillers (18-21, 55-53) off the board through his first three innings, but Tulsa swung in front in the top of the fourth inning. After a quick groundout to open the inning, RF Kyle Garlick pulled his second double of the night to left field. 1B Cody Bellinger then powered a two-run home run to right-center field, lifting the Drillers into the 2-1 advantage.
Carpenter and the Cardinals tied it in the bottom of the fifth. Leading off against Kehrt, Carpenter crushed a solo home run to right-center field, the first homer of his Rehab Assignment with Springfield, tying the game at 2-2.
Weaver wrapped up his outing with two more scoreless innings in the sixth and seventh, allowing just the two tallies through seven innings while striking out nine Drillers.
The Cardinals then powered in front in the top of the seventh. Facing RHP Scott Griggs (L, 0-1) to start the inning, RF Blake Drake worked a walk, before pinch-hitting OF Jhohan Acevedo placed a single to right-center to put two men on. A sacrifice bunt from pinch-hitting 3B Casey Turgeon advanced the runners, followed by an intentional walk issued to 2B Jacob Wilson. With the bases loaded and Martini coming up, the Drillers brought in LHP Jeff Malm for the lefty-lefty match-up. However, Martini skied the first pitch over the left field fence for a go-ahead grand slam, his third homer in Double-A this year and first grand slam, propelling the Cardinals into the 6-2 lead.
After LHP Chandler Hawkins tossed his second scoreless relief inning in the eighth, RHP Ronnie Shaban took over for the ninth. Shaban promptly closed the 6-2 win for the Cardinals, working around a base hit with a pair of strikeouts in the scoreless final frame.