With their 6-4 win in Chicago, the St. Louis Cardinals are officially on their longest winning streak of the year at three games. In years prior, a three-game winning streak wouldn’t be the most sought-after streak to celebrate, but in 2023, it’s the best results St. Louis has warranted. In a season full of disappointment, seeing the wins pile up is more than satisfying for Cardinals fans, who have been expecting these results since before Spring Training started.
Straight out the gate, Nolan Gorman sent an opposite-field home run in the first inning to put the Cardinals up 1-0. It only took two innings for another home run to be sent into the seats of Wrigley, this time courtesy of Lars Nootbaar, who hit a towering shot halfway up the bleachers in right-center in the top of the third. In that same inning, Brendan Donovan and Paul DeJong were able to secure an RBI via walk, putting the Cardinals up 4-1. Jack Flaherty continues to look shaky and would end up surrendering three runs, thanks in part to five walks. But the name you’ll hear when talking about this game will be Paul DeJong, who decided walking in a run wasn’t enough for him. He launched a home run into left center, giving the Cardinals the lead in the ninth inning. Giovanny Gallegos would come into the game, closing it out and giving the Cardinals their third win in a row.
In the 12 games he’s played this season, Paul DeJong carries a slash line of .350/.409/650, with three home runs. He is also putting up his lowest strikeout percentage of his career, at 22.5%. A healthy Paul DeJong has the potential to be an extremely valuable piece in the lineup.
But now we need to look at someone like Jack Flaherty. In his last three starts, he has allowed a combined 18 runs across 12 innings. He has only one start this season without allowing at least two runs (that start being his first of the year back on April 1 against the Blue Jays). Since allowing 13 walks combined in his first two starts, he started to find his control more, allowing a combined nine walks across his next five starts. Then we get to his start against the Cubs, where he allows five walks in the same amount of innings.
Looking forward, the Cardinals will look to earn their first sweep of the season, where they will send Jordan Montgomery to face Justin Steele, who currently leads the National League in ERA, and is second in the MLB. A win against the Cubs on Wednesday would give the Cardinals their fourth win in a row. St. Louis will have an off day on Thursday before starting a three-game series against the Boston Red Sox.