ST. LOUIS (AP)Fast-starting Nolan Gorman hit a go-ahead, two-run homer, rookie Andre Pallante got his first big league win in his 17th appearance and the St. Louis Cardinals beat the San Diego Padres 6-3 on Monday.
Paul Goldschmidt, batting just behind Gorman in the No. 3 slot, also hit two-run homer for the Cardinals.
Gorman, a 22-year-old who was the 19th overall pick in the 2018 amateur draft, made his major league debut on May 20 and hit his first home run Saturday off Milwaukee’s Adrian Houser. Gorman homered on a changeup from Nick Martinez (2-3) for a 2-1 lead in the third inning, had his second three-hit game and is batting .387.
”You got to be able to adapt super quickly,” Gorman said. ”There’s quick adjustments that have to be made. Part of my game is drive in runs and hit the ball hard and far. Big thing for me to do is get a big pitch to hit and do some damage.”
He singled in the first but was thrown out trying to stretch it into a double. He also walked.
”He can put a little fear in that opposing side at any time,” St. Louis manager Oliver Marmol said. ”He can leave the yard.”
Pallante, a 23-year-old right-hander, allowed one run and five hits over 3 1/3 innings with a career-high five strikeouts and no walks. He was the second of five pitchers in an all-bullpen game for the starting pitcher-short Cardinals.
”It’s pretty cool,” Pallante said. ”I’ve been pitching here for a while. It’s kind of worn off a little bit. My dream was always to pitch in the major leagues. Once I got comfortable doing that, the wins and that stuff falls to the wayside. I just want to keep pitching well.”
Pallante gave his father baseballs from his first game and his first strikeout. The pitcher is keeping the ball from his first win.
”I’ve learned a lot about how to be a reliever. I’ve had bad outings and I’ve had good outings,” he said. ”What I’ve been trying to learn is how to eliminate the bad outings. I’ve been learning from the experienced guys.”
Goldschmidt hit his 11th home run of the season, a seventh-inning drive off Steven Wilson that was his fifth in seven games. Goldschmidt is batting .352 with a 21-game hitting streak and has reached base safely in a career-high 35 consecutive games, the longest streak in the major leagues this season.
Goldschmidt has 32 RBIs in May, and 17 of his last 29 hits have been for extra bases (nine home runs and eight doubles).
”Any time you help the team win, it’s a good thing,” Goldschmidt said. ”I just try to keep doing my job. I just try to stay in the moment.”
His 22 extra base hits this month tie him with Stan Musial (1954) and Albert Pujols (2009) for the most in any May in Cardinals history.
Before the home run, Goldschmidt popped up to second in the fifth. During a pitching change in the sixth, Marmol teased him about it.
”I was starting to think you’re not human,” Marmol recalled telling Goldschmidt. ”He’s able to laugh. He has a complete and another level of confidence. What he’s doing right now is highly impressive.”
Packy Naughton, recalled from Triple-A Memphis, started for the Cardinals and went 2 1/3 innings. He fell behind on a third-inning RBI single by Jurickson Profar, who had three hits.
”We’re fighting to get hits, ” Padres manager Bob Melvin said. ”We’re just not getting the big blow..”
Giovanny Gallegos and Genesis Cabrera each pitched a scoreless inning, and Ryan Helsley got four outs, allowing Manny Machado’s RBI single in the ninth.
”That was a huge job by our bullpen,” Goldschmidt said. ”It was a great job by all those pitchers. We needed it.”
Tommy Edman boosted the lead to 3-1 with an RBI single in the fifth, but Austin Nola’s run-scoring single cut the gap in the sixth.
Yadier Molina added an RBI double in the three-run seventh.
Martinez gave up three runs and seven hits in six innings.
”I thought it went well for the most part,” Martinez said. ”My stuff felt good. I felt like I was attacking the zone well. I’m not going to give in or give up.”
Albert Pujols played in the 2,997th game and is four from tying Cal Ripkin Jr. for eighth. Pujols needs two hits to match Paul Molitor for ninth at 3,319 … Molina is one at-bat from tying Johnny Bench at 7,658 for fifth among primary catcher.
CARDS, PADRES ON MEMORIAL DAY HOLIDAY
The only prior time the Cardinals and Padres faced off on Memorial Day before was back in 1975 at Busch Stadium II. San Diego scored a 9-6 victory in a game that Bob Gibson started and Lou Brock recorded a double and stolen base.
Cardinals: Jake Woodford was optioned to Memphis.
Padres: 3B Machado was back in the starting lineup after missing two games with what the club described as the effects of tennis elbow in his right arm. … RF Wil Meyers, who missed Sunday’s game with right knee inflammation, ran before the game. … RHP Mike Clevinger (right triceps strain) is on track to rejoin the club during its June 2-5 series in Milwaukee.
Cardinals: CF Harrison Bader was back in the Cardinals’ lineup Monday. He missed Sunday’s game against Milwaukee when he was ill. … LF Tyler O’Neill (right shoulder impingement) is back to swinging the bat in the cage. His throwing program is progressing. O’Neill may begin a rehab assignment Tuesday.
Paadres: LHP Blake Snell (0-2, 6.00) will be making his third start of the year. In his last start, he gave up three earned runs in 5 1/3 in a 4-1 loss to Milwaukee.
Cardinals: RHP Adam Wainwright (5-4, 2.13) will be facing the Padres for the first time this season and 18th time. He is 6-0 with a 1.73 ERA in eight starts and two relief appearances against San Diego during the regular season at Busch Stadium, never allowing a home run in 58 2/3 innings.
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