Springfield, MO - The Springfield Cardinals cruised past the Tulsa Drillers, 11-4, before 4,431 fans at Hammons Field on Sunday evening. After scoring 18 runs on Saturday, the Cardinals have outscored their opponents, 29-5, through the last two games, matching their season high with a four-game winning streak.
For the fifth straight game, the Cardinals (35-34) jumped in front with a run in the bottom of the first inning. Facing LHP Chris Rearick (L, 0-1), 2B Dickie Joe Thon swung himself on with a one-out double. Following a fly out, RF Adolis Garcia drilled an RBI double to right field, bringing in Thon for the 1-0 lead.
The Drillers (32-37) responded right away, seizing the lead with three runs in the top of the second inning against RHP Matt Pearce (W, 6-5). After a double by LF Jacob Scavuzzo and a single from 2B Jose Fernandez put runners at the corners, C Paul Hoenecke tied the game with an RBI sacrifice fly. CF Johan Mieses then cracked the tie, sending a two-run home run to left field to catapult the Drillers into the 3-1 lead.
Pearce, though, dug in from there on, allowing the Cardinals bats to swing right back into the lead in the bottom of the fourth. SS Jacob Wilson started the rally by reaching on an error, followed by a single from LF Anthony Garcia. C Andrew Knizner pulled an RBI double to left field, scoring Wilson for Knizner's first-career Double-A RBI. Two outs later, CF Magneuris Sierra came through with a go-ahead, two-run single, propelling the Cardinals into the 4-3 lead.
The Cardinals kept the foot on the pedal with three more runs in the bottom of the fifth. After a pair of one-out singles from RF Adolis Garcia and Wilson, LF Anthony Garcia lasered a three-run home run over the left field fence, his ninth long-ball of the year, padding the Cardinals lead to 7-3.
After Pearce had tossed three straight scoreless innings, the Drillers did plate a final run against him in the top of the sixth. Leading off the inning, 1B Matt Beaty pulled a solo home run to right field. Pearce, however, navigated through the rest of the stanza unscathed, closing his sixth and final frame on the mound with the Cardinals ahead, 7-4.
Springfield got the run right back in the bottom of the sixth against RHP Isaac Anderson. With the bases loaded and two away, Wilson rifled a two-run single off a diving catch attempt from 3B Zach McKinstry, scoring Sierra and Thon to make it 9-4.
The Cardinals added two final runs in the top of the eighth inning. Thon led off with a single, before racing home on an RBI double by 1B Bruce Caldwell. Caldwell took third on a fly out and then darted in on an RBI groundout from Wilson, increasing the Cardinals lead to 11-4.
RHP Landon Beck had dealt a pair of perfect relief innings in the seventh and eighth, before RHP Pedro Echemendia slammed the door with a scoreless ninth to close the 11-4 win for the Cardinals.
This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.