Cardinals suffer second consecutive sweep as Angels bombard Flaherty for 10 runs

St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Jack Flaherty (22) reacts in the dugout after being pulled...
St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Jack Flaherty (22) reacts in the dugout after being pulled in the third inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels, Thursday May 4, 2023, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Joe Puetz)(Joe Puetz | AP)
Published: May. 4, 2023 at 3:59 PM CDT
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ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV) - The Cardinals are in free fall.

St. Louis is an NL-worst 10-22 after being swept for a second consecutive series on Wednesday afternoon. A 2-0 Cardinals lead built in the bottom of the first was short-lived as the Angels jumped on Cardinals starter Jack Flaherty for 10 runs in 2.1 innings. The Angels defeated the Cardinals, 11-7 at Busch Stadium.

Instead of performing as the stopper to staunch the bleeding of a losing skid that has seen the Cardinals drop six straight games and 11 of their last 13, Flaherty poured kerosene on the blaze by repeatedly missing location in counts that favored the pitcher.

At one point early in Wednesday’s game, Los Angeles batters were 9-for-14 against Cardinal pitching in two-strike counts. The most damaging and baffling pitch of the contest was unquestionably the 76-mph curveball that gently floated from Flaherty’s right hand into the upper-middle portion of the strike zone for eight-hole batter Luis Rengifo.

Though he entered the day with a .203 batting average and sub-.600 OPS on the season, Rengifo had no trouble turning on the hanger and mashing it for a three-run homer to give the Angels their first lead of the day. Another two-strike mistake.

Los Angeles piled on from there, chasing Flaherty from the game on a comebacker in the third inning that glanced off his left arm. By the time it was all said and done, Flaherty was responsible for 10 runs, all earned in a loss that took any remaining air out of the proverbial balloon keeping this Cardinals season afloat.