Kelly turns in strong performance in extra-inning loss -

Kelly turns in strong performance in extra-inning loss

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By John Bailey By John Bailey

(BaseballStL) — The Cardinals lost their tenth game of the season in extra innings at Busch, following a controversial move in the ninth inning. Lost in the shuffle was the impressive performance of the St. Louis starter. 

Joe Kelly continued his domination of the Cubs Friday night, going six innings on just 87 pitches. 

Coming into the game, he had held the northsiders to a .209 average. He surrendered six hits in the contest, all singles. 

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“A lot better than last outing,” he said post game. “I had my two pitches working for me, fastball curveball, kind of got a feel for my change there at the end. Didn’t have any walks so that was a plus.”

Notorious for his dancing, Kelly dipped and dodged his way out of trouble, getting two double plays and riding several warning track catches to safety.

He faced 23 batters, getting ahead of 11 and striking out three. He was finally chased in the seventh, after an error by Kolten Wong put Anthony Rizzo aboard. Two singles later, Rizzo had scored and Kelly was out of the game. 

Despite the ending, Friday’s performance was another chapter in Kelly’s successful evolution. Having only given up one earned run on the season, the righty has continued his run from a strong second half in 2013.

He was unpredictable last season, throwing slightly less first pitch strikes and seeing less 0-2 counts than the rest of the league, but getting more called thirds. 

Kelly recorded one called third Friday, making it two for the season. 

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