Burnett, Phillies stop Cardinals 5-1
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A.J. Burnett had a special fan watching him pitch for the first time Friday night and he wanted to impress.
Burnett scattered seven hits for his first complete game of the year and the Philadelphia Phillies won their season-high fifth in a row, beating the St. Louis Cardinals 5-1.
“It the first time in my career my grandmother has seen me pitch,” Burnett said. “It was extra special. She came up from Little Rock, Arkansas, with my mom and brother. It was awesome. She saw a good game.”
“I’m giving her the game ball,” he said.
The Phillies’ winning streak has come on the road. They have won nine of 11 overall.
“Everybody is feeding off one another and it’s clicking,” Burnett said. “We’re having fun.”
St. Louis has dropped three in a row after winning five straight.
“We’re trying real hard,” said Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina, who had two hits. “But we’re facing good pitchers. A.J. threw a good game, kept us off balance.”
Burnett (5-6) threw 111 pitches to earn his 24th complete game. He struck out three, walked one and hit two batters.
“Complete games don’t happen very often,” Burnett said. “I got quick outs, groundball outs. I threw my changeup a lot. I bet I threw 20-plus tonight. It was one of the days when the hook wasn’t there. Normally, we keep pounding the hook trying to get it, but the changeup was effective. That pitch helped more than anything.”
That was the key, Philadelphia manager Ryne Sandberg said.
“He had command of three pitches and he seemed to really pound the zone,” Sandberg said. “When we gave him the lead, he really held his stuff. He still had good stuff in the ninth inning. He did a lot of things to help himself win the game.”
That included his bat.
Burnett, who came into the season as a career .110 hitter, contributed an RBI double and scored. The ball bounced on the track in front of the 400-foot mark.
“With the infield in, I’ve got hit it in the air, right?” Burnett said with a laugh. “I put a pretty good swing on it thought. That’s all I got, though. If that ball doesn’t leave, it’s not going to leave at all.”
Marlon Byrd homered and John Mayberry Jr. added two hits and scored twice. Jimmy Rollins drove in two runs and extended his hitting streak to 14 games with two hits.
Jaime Garcia (3-1) pitched into the sixth inning, giving up four runs on seven hits and two walks. He lost his third start in a row to the Phillies.
“He pitched close enough to give us a chance,” St. Louis manager Mike Matheny said. “He had good movement, he just got hit a couple of times.”
The game began after a 50-minute rain delay.
St. Louis took a 1-0 lead in the third when Matt Carpenter was hit by a pitch with two outs and later scored on a single by Matt Holliday.
The Phillies scored twice in the fifth and three more in the sixth.
Mayberry, Burnett and Rollins doubled in the fifth. Burnett drove in his first run of the season and Rollins stretched his longest hitting streak since a 14-game run in 2007.
“Any way I can help,” Burnett said. “Whatever it takes.”
The Phillies chased Garcia in the sixth. Byrd led off with a homer. After Domonic Brown doubled, Seth Maness relieved. Mayberry hit an RBI single and scored on Rollins’ sacrifice fly.
NOTES: The Cardinals did not take batting practice before the game. ... The Phillies activated 3B Cody Asche (left hamstring) from the 15-day disabled list and put 3B Reid Brignac on the DL with a sprained left ankle. Brignac hurt his ankle in a play at first base Thursday when he tried to beat pitcher Shelby Miller to the bag. Asche grew up in nearby St. Charles County and played for the first time at Busch Stadium. ... Cardinals P Kevin Siegrist (strained left forearm) played long toss from 120 feet. He has not pitched since May 23. He said he might throw bullpen session Sunday. ... Cards GM John Mozeliak said P Trevor Megill, the Cardinals’ third-round pick in the amateur draft, has opted to return to Loyola Marymount for his senior season. Mozeliak said the team no longer will scout Megill, adding that Megill wanted more than the designated slot value of $504,400. ... Mozeliak said P Joe Kelly will have a “rigorous bullpen” Sunday and then a “baseball decision” will made about when Kelly might begin a rehab assignment. ... Rosemary Depler, of Peoria, Illinois, celebrated her 101st birthday by throwing out the ceremonial first pitch.