By CHUCK KING
JUPITER, Fla. (AP) — Jhonny Peralta had three hits, including his first homer of spring training, leading the St. Louis Cardinals over a Miami Marlins’ split squad 7-1 Tuesday.
Peralta, who entered in 1-for-14 slide, homered on a fifth-inning slider from Bryan Morris for a 5-1 lead. He singled in his first two at-bats.
Marco Gonzales, trying to win the fifth spot in the Cardinals’ rotation, allowed his first run of spring training. He gave up four hits and two walks in 4 2-3 innings, striking out three. The Cardinals’ 2014 minor league pitcher of the year threw 41 of his 67 pitches for strikes and also looped an RBI single over first baseman Jeff Baker in a three-run fourth.
“He got into trouble and figured out how to pitch out,” Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. “He did a real nice of doing exactly what we would hope.”
Matt Holliday had a bases-loaded, two-run single in the fourth off Jarred Cosart, who allowed four runs, eight hits and three walks in 3 2-3 innings. Cosart yielded three earned runs in two innings against Minnesota in his previous outing.
“I’ve got to look at some mechanical stuff,” said Cosart, who surrendered four runs on eight hits and three walks. “I threw three really good pitches and then five bad ones. I’ve just got to get a couple things tightened up.”
Marlins: Both clubs had their pitchers bat for the first time this spring training. Cosart went 0 for 1 with a sacrifice. “I’m glad I was able to get the bunt down and not embarrass myself,” he said.
Cardinals: Adam Wainwright is to make his exhibition season debut Saturday when St. Louis plays Atlanta. Matheny said if all goes well, Wainwright would start every five days for the remainder of spring training,. That may enable to start the April 5 major league opener at the Chicago Cubs.
Cardinals: Lance Lynn is to throw a simulated game at the Cardinals’ complex on Wednesday. He’s been slowed by a sore hip. Outfielder Jon Jay, working his way back from offseason wrist surgery, is to bat in that game.
Marlins: Miami optioned pitchers Adam Conley, Justin Nicolino and Matt Ramsey to Triple-A New Orleans before Tuesday’s game.
Cardinals: St. Louis optioned pitcher Tyler Lyons and infielder Greg Garcia to Triple-A Memphis and reassigned catchers Carson Kelly and Breyvic Valera to their minor league camp.
PINCH HIT PREVIEW
Without the benefit of the designated hitter, Miami started Ichiro Suzuki in center field. Marlins manager Mike Redmond has frequently used Ichiro as the DH in spring training, in part to prepare him for pinch hitting during the season. “Basically, DHing is three or four pinch hits, because you’re not in the flow of the game,” Redmond said.
St. Louis wore green shirts and caps for Tuesday’s St. Patrick’s Day game.
Mat Latos is to make his second start of spring training for Miami when Washington comes to Jupiter on Wednesday. The Cardinals are off Wednesday and plan to start Jaime Garcia on Thursday against New York.
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