SAN DIEGO -- Stellar work by the Padres' bullpen in the top of the 7th, and a seven-run outburst by San Diego's bats in the bottom of the inning, helped the Padres defeat the Cardinals, 8-0, on Saturday night at Petco Park, inching one game closer to a sweep of St. Louis.
Padres starter Ian Kennedy, who entered the game with a 2.63 ERA since the All-Star break, allowed no runs and seven hits while striking out a season-high 10 batters in six-plus innings.
"They are a great team, an all-around complete team,'' Kennedy said. "You know you have your hands full with that lineup.''
In the bottom of the seventh inning, Matt Kemp and Justin Upton knocked in two runs each, Kemp with a single and Upton with a double to start a scoring frenzy for San Diego that followed three San Diego relievers escaping a two-on, none-out jam in the top of the frame to keep Kennedy in line for the win.
"It took some wind out of our sail, for sure," Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said about the missed opportunities to score and the ensuing Padres breakout. "You know, we have been on the other side of that when it looks like our back is up against the wall and we come in and make some great pitches, make some great plays, and get out of a situation that looks like it's inevitable for a run or two -- and how you feed off that -- that's exactly what happened to us."
Cardinals starter Carlos Martinez pitched 6 1/3 innings, allowing three runs on seven hits, walking one and striking out six. The Cardinals are now 19-5 when Martinez starts.
MOMENTS THAT MATTERED The bullpen K squad: With the Padres clinging to a 1-0 lead in the seventh with no outs and the go-ahead runners aboard, Kennedy was lifted. San Diego relievers Shawn Kelley, Marc Rzepczynski and Bud Norris struck out the side to strand Brandon Moss and Tommy Pham on the corners.
"In that situation, it looks like they are definitely going to tie the game,'' Padres interim manager Pat Murphy said. "But it was just great pitching by those three guys. They made pitches.''
Martinez swinging: Martinez provided an offensive spark to the Cardinals on Saturday night. In his first at-bat of the game, the pitcher doubled to right field, recording the first extra-base hit of his career. Later Martinez would get another hit, an infield single in the sixth inning. Saturday marked his second multi-hit game of the season.
Rookie RBI:Travis Jankowski got his second and third Major League RBIs in his second game. He gave the Padres a 1-0 lead by plating Derek Norris on a grounder to second base in the fourth. Norris was aboard after leading off with a triple, his second of the season. The rookie would add another RBI in the seventh with an infield single to score Clint Barmes.
Seventh heaven: The Padres' cushion was extended from 1-0 to 8-0 in the seventh inning as they sent 12 batters to the plate. San Diego's offense did its part, but the Cardinals helped, too. Three of the runs were unearned thanks to a key throwing error by third baseman Mark Reynolds.
"Just one of those innings that just kind of blew up on us," said Matheny.
SOUND SMART WITH YOUR FRIENDS
The Padres are the only National League team that is .500 or better against the Cardinals this season. They have won four out of six games.
CARPENTER SHOWN THE DOOR
In the the fifth inning, Matt Carpenter was ejected by home-plate umpire Chris Segal after the Cardinals' second baseman was unhappy with the third-strike call. Immediately after Kennedy's pitch was called a strike, Carpenter yelled, turned around, got in the umpire's face and was ejected fairly quickly. Manager Mike Matheny came out and held back Carpenter and also had some words with Segal, but ultimately kept his cool and headed back to the dugout. Carpenter was 0-for-3 before the ejection, and entered Saturday's game batting .136 in his last six games. Kolten Wong came in to replace Carpenter.
"It's probably the worst strike I have ever had called against me, and I will stand by that," Carpenter said. "I didn't say anything offensive to him, I just let him know. And I am sure he wasn't happy that I was screaming at him and pointing at him, but in that crucial point in the game, [the call] can't happen." More >
"When we get a lead, we're holding it. We're full throttle right now and clicking on all cylinders.'' -- Kelley after the Padres won their fifth in a row and clinched their second winning series of the season over the Cardinals.
WHAT'S NEXT Cardinals: The Cardinals will send Michael Wacha to the mound for Sunday's series finale at :310 p.m. CT. Sunday marks Wacha's second career start against the Padres. He faced San Diego last on July 3, when he took a no-decision, allowing five hits and one run.
Padres: Rookie Colin Rea looks to continue his solid run on Sunday, aiming for his third win in as many Major League starts. The 1:10 p.m. PT contest is the final one of the six-game homestand. The Padres will head out to visit Washington and Philadelphia, playing each club three times.