But his replacement, Craig Stammen, isn't faring much better. Daniel Descalso drove Stammen's third pitch, a sinker that caught too much of the plate, into the right-field, red-filled stands. It was just Descalso's fifth home run this season. Next up: another light-hitting middle infielder, Pete Kozma. Stammen walked him.
There was a brief respite when Lance Lynn dropped a sacrifice bunt ... but the respite was very brief. The Nationals did retire Lynn, but Kozma was off with the pitch and chugged all the way to third base. And a moment later, he trotted home when second baseman Danny Espinosa completely whiffed on Jon Jay's routine ground ball. Then Jay stole second base, Carlos Beltran walked, and Davey Johnson had seen enough; time for Pitcher No. 3.
Specifically, ex-Yankee Christian Garcia, who did retire the next couple of hitters, including striking out Allen Craig to finally end the inning.
We're two hours and four innings into this one, and the Cardinals have a commanding 7-1 lead.