Cards’ Hudson looks to keep ball rolling vs. Reds

Field Level Media

June 05, 2019 at 8:47 am.

St. Louis Cardinals right-hander Dakota Hudson is coming off a strong month of May, and he’ll try to continue his success against the visiting Cincinnati Reds in the second game of their three-game series on Wednesday night.

Hudson (4-3, 3.94 ERA) went 2-2 with a 2.80 ERA in six starts last month. In his past three outings, he pitched at least six innings and allowed two runs or fewer each time.

After allowing one run and four hits in six innings of a 5-3 win in Philadelphia against the Phillies on Thursday, Hudson said he couldn’t wait for his next opportunity.

“I get excited all week long,” he told reporters. “I watch the other guys go out and do their thing, then I feel like I’m ready to go out and compete to win a game every time I’m out there.”

Cincinnati displayed the strong pitching performance in the series opener on Tuesday night.

After Matt Carpenter homered to lead off the first inning for the Cardinals, Luis Castillo blanked St. Louis on one hit over six innings before Amir Garrett, David Hernandez and Raisel Iglesias combined to shut out the Cardinals the rest of the way in the 4-1 win.

The Cardinals struck out 14 times in the series opener.

The Reds will send right-hander Anthony DeSclafani to the mound in search of two straight wins.

DeSclafani (2-3, 4.97) is trying to bounce back from a rough month of May in which he went 1-2 with a 5.59 ERA.

DeSclafani owns twice as many wins against St. Louis than any other team in his major league career. He’s 6-2 against the Cardinals with a 3.45 ERA in 12 games (11 starts).

DeSclafani had his best outing of the season in St. Louis, throwing six shutout innings on April 26 in a 12-1 win. He had faced the Cardinals 12 days earlier in Cincinnati and gave up four runs and five hits in four innings of a 9-5 loss, but he didn’t get the decision.

The Cardinals will count on Carpenter and Paul Goldschmidt to continue doing damage against DeSclafani.

Carpenter is 11-for-24 off him in his career with three home runs and seven walks, while Goldschmidt is 8-for-15 with a home run.

St. Louis second baseman Kolten Wong has seen his batting average dip to .237 after he hit .170 in May, and there’s a good chance Wong could be on the bench on Wednesday, as he’s 0-for-17 in his career off DeSclafani.

Hudson’s only start against the Reds came April 27 in St. Louis. He gave up three runs and seven hits in 5 2/3 innings, earning the win in the 6-3 victory. He also threw two scoreless innings of relief against Cincinnati on Sept. 2.

Hudson’s leash seems to be growing longer under manager Mike Shildt with each outing.

“I feel like (Shildt) puts me in a situation where I can be successful,” Hudson said. “It feels great to be coming from my manager.”

Hudson will face a tough matchup against Reds first baseman Joey Votto, who had two hits in the series opener on Tuesday for his sixth multi-hit game in his past eight. He has reached base in 20 straight.