Beltran, Cardinals hope to secure rubber match with Marlins
(Sports Network) - Even at the age of 36, Carlos Beltran isn't showing signs of slowing down.
Beltran will try to lead the St. Louis Cardinals to a series victory on Sunday afternoon in the finale of a three-game series with the Miami Marlins.
The outfielder recorded the 35th multi-homer game of his career in Saturday's 13-7 victory over the Marlins, hitting a pair of solo home runs to go along with a triple and three runs scored. Beltran is among the NL leaders with 16 homers this season and is hitting .369 over a 14-game hitting streak with six home runs and 15 RBI.
Beltran's second homer on Saturday was the 350th of his career.
"I felt great," Beltran said. "Got to thank God for that. I've been healthy and been working hard. Good things are happening for me and for the team and just happy where we are at right now."
David Freese added three hits and a home run and Lance Lynn helped his own cause at the plate by driving in two runs.
It was a struggle for the righty on the mound though, despite him picking up his ninth win of the season. Lynn allowed a career-high seven runs over five innings, but the Cardinals still moved to 5-3 on a nine-game road trip.
The Cards have beaten the Marlins in 11 of the last 14 meetings, going 8-2 in Miami over that time.
Marlins starter Tom Koehler failed in an attempt to secure his first major league victory. He was tagged for five runs in the first frame and nine total over a 4 2/3-inning effort.
"It was a battle for me today," Koehler said. "The team did a great job of finding the bat today. It's unfortunate that I wasn't able to keep them down when we got back into the game."
The 13 runs and 17 hits allowed by Miami were both season highs.
Giancarlo Stanton hit a two-run homer and Rob Brantly added two hits and three RBI for Miami, which took the opener, 5-4, on Friday.
Tyler Lyons will try to tighten his grasp on a rotation spot for the Cardinals this afternoon.
The Cards needed to make a roster move when they activated starter Jake Westbrook for Friday's opener and it was Michael Wacha, and not fellow rookie Lyons, who was sent down to Triple-A to make room for the veteran. That despite Lyons having lost two straight starts after beginning his major league career with a pair of one-run, seven-inning victories at San Diego and Kansas City.
Lyons may have been helped by the fact he is the lone southpaw in St. Louis' rotation.
"It's nice to have that left-hander in our starting rotation, and it's been nice to watch Tyler do his thing," Cards manager Mike Matheny told his club's website. "He's been very efficient and given us a chance every time he's been out there. Michael did a great job, too, but right now it's a better fit for Tyler to be in there."
The 25-year-old Lyons will face the Marlins for the first time after suffering his most recent setback on June 8 in Cincinnati. He gave up four runs on six hits, two homers and a walk over 5 1/3 innings of a 4-2 decision. That pushed his earned run average up to 3.51 on the season.
Taking the hill for the Marlins is Ricky Nolasco, who has lost two straight and five of his past six decisions.
Nolasco has been a victim of bad luck on a few occasions this year, but struggled on the mound his last time out on Monday versus Milwaukee. The right-hander yielded four runs and a season-high 10 hits over 5 1/3 innings of work, falling to 3-7 through 14 starts this season with a 3.80 ERA.
"We got down early," said Miami manager Mike Redmond. "Ricky came out and just looked like he just was a little uncomfortable and just a little bit out of the strike zone."
Nolasco, 30, is just 1-4 with a 4.59 ERA in nine career meetings with the Cardinals, all but one of those starts, but did defeat them in the last encounter. He picked up the victory on July 6 of last year in St. Louis by holding the Cards to one unearned run over six innings of work.
06/16 08:42:54 ET