Baseball / Sports

Cardinals swing and miss and lose to Rays

The wind was blowing northeast at Busch Stadium at a rate of eight miles per hour Wednesday night, according to Weather.com.

But the action on the field made it feel a lot gustier.

The 43,564 fans that packed Busch witnessed a spectacle in swinging and missing, as 25 batters struck out in the Rays' 3-0 victory over the Cardinals.

With the loss, the Cardinals drop into a tie for second place with Pittsburgh and 2.5 games back of the Brewers, who beat Cincinnati. The Pirates topped the Dodgers for the second straight day.

The Cardinals, meanwhile, were swept in this mid-week mini series by the Rays, who improved to 25-11 since June 10, when they sat 18 games below .500.

Rays starter Jake Odorizzi baffled the Cardinals for 5 2/3 innings Tuesday. Wednesday it was Alex Cobb, who confused them even more and lasted much longer.

Cobb struck out 10 over seven innings of work. He scattered five hits (four singles), didn't walk a batter and just twice let a runner reach second base.

Cardinals starter Lance Lynn lost despite allowed one earned run over 6 1/3 innings. He walked three and struck out seven, and left trailing 1-0 with runners on first and third in the seventh.

Desmond Jennings (3-for-5) started the inning with a single and advanced to third when a routine ground ball skipped off Kolten Wong's glove at second base. That put runners on the corners and ended Lynn's night.

Randy Choate was brought on to face the Rays' No. 3 hitter Matt Joyce, but Rays manager Joe Maddon pinched hit righty swinging reserve outfielder Brandon Guyer instead. Choate hit Guyer to load the bases.

Seth Maness allowed a sacrifice fly to Evan Longoria to make it 2-0 Rays.

Tampa Bay added another run in the ninth off Sam Freeman, when Guyer singled home a run.

The Cardinals went futilely in the ninth, striking out three times against Jake McGee.

Every Cardinal starter except Matt Carpenter and Oscar Taveras struck out at least once. Rays pitching collected 15 strikeouts in all.

(c)2014 St. Louis Post-Dispatch

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