Surging Cardinals double up Dodgers, take series

Zach Dalin-USA TODAY Sports

Oscar Mercado and Paul DeJong combined to drive in nine runs as the St. Louis Cardinals defeated the visiting Los Angeles Dodgers 10-5 on Sunday.

Mercado, batting ninth in the order, went 3-for-5 and tied his single-game career high with five RBIs. DeJong hit an RBI single and a three-run homer.

The Cardinals won their fourth straight series. After starting the season 10-24, they have gone 11-3.

Cardinals starting pitcher Jack Flaherty allowed three runs on four hits and four walks with five strikeouts in 4 2/3 innings. Drew VerHagen (3-0) pitched 2 1/3 scoreless relief innings to earn the victory.

Dodgers starting pitcher Clayton Kershaw (6-4) struggled through his shortest outing of his season. He allowed four runs on five hits and three walks with six strikeouts in 3 2/3 innings.

Los Angeles third baseman Max Muncy was ejected by third-base umpire Paul Emmel in the fourth inning for protesting a called third strike.

The Cardinals took a 3-0 second-inning lead. Doubles by Nolan Arenado, who extended his hitting streak to 12 games, and Tommy Edman produced one run.

Brendan Donovan walked and Mercado hit a two-run double.

The Dodgers’ Jason Heyward hit a double, took third on Miguel Rojas’ single and scored on David Peralta’s sacrifice fly as they cut the lead to 3-1 in the third inning.

The Cardinals made it 4-1 the next inning. DeJong walked, raced to third on Donovan’s single and scored on Mercado’s single.

Heyward and Peralta walked in the fifth inning and Freddie Freeman poked an RBI single to extend his hitting streak to 11 games. After Will Smith walked to load the bases, VerHagen relieved Flaherty and balked home a run to trim the lead to 4-3.

The Cardinals pushed made it 7-3 in the bottom of the inning. Arenado singled, Alec Burleson walked, Edman and DeJong singled to produce a run — then Mercado hit a two-run single.

Singles by Arenado and Edman followed by DeJong’s three-homer made it 10-3 in the seventh inning.

The Dodgers trimmed their deficit to 10-5 in the eighth inning on sacrifice flies by J.D. Martinez and James Outman.

–Field Level Media

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