Cards beat Nats behind Molina grand slam, 4 other homers
Yadier Molina hit a grand slam, Marcell Ozuna homered twice and the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Washington Nationals 11-8 on Tuesday night.
Molina provided a cushion for St. Louis via his sixth career slam, which made it 11-5 with two outs in the ninth.
The Cardinals, who occupy the second NL wild card spot, hit five homers overall as they stopped a three-game skid.
Right fielder Yairo Munoz robbed Ryan Zimmerman of a three-run homer in the bottom of the ninth, reaching over the fence and pulling it back into the field of play for a two-run double.
Tyson Ross (8-9) pitched 1 1/3 innings for the win and Jordan Hicks got the final out for his sixth save in 11 chances.
Ozuna and Paul DeJong homered back-to-back leading off the sixth inning to break a 4-4 tie, and one out later, Patrick Wisdom went deep to make it 7-4.
Making his second major league appearance, reliever Austen Williams (0-1) gave up all three homers. He allowed none in 68 innings this season in Double and Triple A.
The 4-hour, 10-minute game included 16 walks and 20 strikeouts.
Wilmer Difo homered and Bryce Harper had a double and three walks in five plate appearances for the Nationals, who fell one game below .500.
Ozuna gave led off the second with his 17th homer, and Matt Carpenter capped the inning with a two-run single that made it 4-0.
Washington rallied in the fifth when Zimmerman led off with a grounder to second that second baseman Munoz misplayed for an error. Washington ultimately sent 10 men to the plate in the inning against three pitchers.
Harper drove in two with his bases-loaded double, and Trea Turner and Juan Soto drew bases-loaded walks.
Washington starter Erick Fedde allowed four runs in five innings. John Gant of St. Louis was charged with three runs - none earned - in 4 1/3 innings.
St. Louis picked up a first-inning out when Harper walked on a 3-2 pitch with Turner running from first. Despite the walk, catcher Molina threw to Munoz. The Cardinals appealed the play, and upon review Turner was called out. Though entitled to second base via Harper's walk, Turner slid past the bag and was tagged out.
The Nationals recalled a top prospect, OF Victor Robles, from Triple-A Syracuse along with INF Adrian Sanchez and RHP Austin Voth and selected the contract of RHP Kyle McGowin from Syracuse. Robles flied out as a pinch-hitter in the sixth. Washington also reinstated Fedde and RHP Joe Ross from the 60-day disabled list and activated LHP Tommy Milone from the 10-day DL. Milone was then assigned outright to Syracuse.
Cardinals: Manager Mike Shildt said 2B Kolten Wong (left hamstring strain) will be activated tomorrow.
Nationals: LHP Sean Doolittle (left toe inflammation) will throw another simulated game Wednesday. "His (velocity) was a little down in the last one so we just want to make sure he's not tinkering with his mechanics or anything like that," manager Dave Martinez said. ... RHP Jefry Rodriguez will move to the bullpen to limit his innings and Ross will start Friday against the Cubs.
Cardinals: RHP Miles Mikolas (13-4, 2.96 ERA), who was originally listed as Tuesday's starter, will instead go in Wednesday's finale. He gave up four runs in seven innings to Washington on Aug. 13.
Nationals: RHP Tanner Roark (8-14, 2.96 ERA) makes the second home start of his career against the Cardinals.