ST. LOUIS (AP) — It took Zack Greinke a few batters to settle in against the St. Louis Cardinals. Once he did, the Arizona Diamondbacks' ace was dominant.
Greinke gave up a run and three hits to the first three batters he faced. After that he gave up just one more hit in his seven innings to lead the Diamondbacks to a 7-1 win over the Cardinals on Saturday night.
"I was making a bunch of mistakes the first three batters," Greinke said. "I just didn't feel loose really. I was just having trouble making pitches. Then guys in scoring position all of a sudden my pitches started going where I wanted a little better, so that was nice."
Greinke (13-4) struck out nine and walked one and improved to 5-0 in his last six starts. He hasn't lost a game in more than a month. He escaped jams in the first and fifth innings.
"He did a good job really bearing down when he had to," teammate Paul Goldschmidt said. "They got those first three guys on and got a run and he was able to limit the damage. I think they had baserunners a few other innings where, a first and second no outs, and that game could have changed if they were able to get another run or two."
Goldschmidt, J.D. Martinez and Ketel Marte each homered to pace the Diamondbacks' offense. Goldschmidt drove in three runs and Jeff Mathis added two hits.
"Offensively we did a number of things that were outstanding," Arizona manager Torey Lovullo said. "We had a really nice approach. I think we drew seven walks today. Runners on base all day long. Goldie and J.D. with the back-to-back home runs. But I thought the real key to the day was Zack setting the tone for us. Seven innings. You can't ask for anything more."
Goldschmidt hit a two-run homer, his 22nd, and Martinez followed with a solo shot, his 21st, to give the Diamondbacks a 3-1 lead in the fourth.
Martinez has five home runs and 12 RBIs in eight games since being acquired from Detroit on July 18.
"He's had some big homers for us," Goldschmidt said. "He had the grand slam. The day before that he had the two-homer game. Another one tonight too."
Cardinals starter Mike Leake (7-9), who threw seven shutout innings in a win over Colorado in his last start, allowed three runs and four hits over five innings.
Marte had a two-run homer, A.J. Pollock an RBI double and Goldschmidt a sacrifice fly in the Diamondbacks' four-run eighth against reliever Kevin Siegrist.
Paul DeJong's RBI single gave the Cardinals a 1-0 lead in the first inning. Greinke then retired the next 12 batters.
"We left a little more out there in the first that's for sure," St. Louis manager Mike Matheny said. "That's the kind of pitcher that when he finds his grove he's going to be tough and that proved unfortunately to be true tonight again."
ROBBIE RAY UPDATE
Arizona left-hander Robbie Ray, who was struck in the head by a line drive on Friday night, was placed on the 7-day concussion disabled list Saturday.
"We saw Robbie today," Lovullo said before the game. "He came into the clubhouse and he looked really good. Obviously the wound was repaired with a couple staples in his head. He just said he felt a little bit sore. So everything is trending towards a very positive outcome and we're very thankful for that."
Lovullo said Ray had symptoms of a concussion, but the pitcher's cognitive testing and balance were good and he is expected remain with the team for the remainder of the road trip.
The announced attendance on Saturday was 48,052, which is the largest crowd in Busch Stadium III history.
Diamondbacks: With Ray going on the DL, Arizona recalled RHP Silvino Bracho from Triple-A Reno.
Cardinals: RHP Adam Wainwright (mid-back tightness) is expected to throw a bullpen session on Monday. ... RF Stephen Piscotty (right groin strain) continues to rehab at Single-A Peoria. He went 1 for 4 with an RBI single on Saturday.
Diamondbacks: RHP Taijuan Walker (6-4, 3.47 ERA) will face the Cardinals for the first time on Sunday. He is 4-2 with a 2.70 ERA in eight road starts this season.
Cardinals: RHP Lance Lynn (8-6, 3.21 ERA) is 4-0 with a 2.94 ERA in 10 career games, including eight starts, against Arizona.