(SportsNetwork.com) - Carlos Martinez aims to record a third straight scoreless outing Sunday afternoon when the St. Louis Cardinals complete a three-game series with the Los Angeles Dodgers.
The young right-hander went 0-2 over his first three starts of May, giving up 16 runs total, but has bounced back with 13 1/3 shutout innings. He hurled 6 1/3 frames of four-hit ball to beat the New York Mets on May 20, then took a tough-luck no-decision versus Arizona on Monday.
Martinez limited the Diamondbacks to just five hits over seven innings, striking out a season high-tying eight while walking two. St. Louis eventually earned a 3-2 win and Martinez lowered his earned run average to 3.54 to go along with a 4-2 record.
The 23-year-old is 0-1 lifetime against the Dodgers, pitching to a 5.14 ERA over four games with three starts.
Los Angeles had seen its fair share of scoreless efforts on the road recently, but finally put those issues to rest with last night's 5-1 victory in St. Louis. However, the win didn't come before the club set an unwanted franchise mark.
The Dodgers were blanked in Friday's opener, marking the fourth straight time the club had been shut out on the road. They were then held off the scoreboard through the first five innings of Saturday night's game by unbeaten Cardinals starter Michael Wacha, but finally erupted for four runs in the sixth en route to a 5-1 win.
After the start of the game was delayed by 2 hours and 20 minutes because of rain, the Dodgers were hitless against Wacha for the first five innings. That pushed their scoreless drought on the road to a franchise-record 42 straight innings, passing the 41-inning streak set by the 1908 club, but Justin Turner ended the no-hit bid with a double in the sixth and later scored on Howie Kendrick's single.
Yasmani Grandal added a three-run homer off Wacha to give the Dodgers a 4-1 lead. He had been activated off the seven-day concussion disabled list earlier in the day.
"I just got behind Grandal and he put a good swing on a heater, hit it out of here," Wacha said.
Carlos Frias gave up one unearned run in seven innings to pick up the win, his first in four starts. He yielded just five hits and two walks six days after his worst outing of the season, when he was battered for 10 runs and 12 hits in four-plus innings against San Diego last Sunday.
"You put that one away and get ready for the next start," Frias said of his last start.
Los Angeles snapped a two-game slide and moved back in front of the San Francisco Giants for first place in the NL West by a half-game.
Matt Carpenter and Jason Heyward had two hits apiece but the Cardinals ended with just six as a team. Wacha fell to 7-1 on the year as St. Louis had a five-game win streak snapped.
It is unknown if Cardinals outfielder Matt Holliday will be well enough to play today. He missed Friday's game due to flu-like symptoms and then came out after four innings on Saturday due to illness.
Holliday did walk in the fourth inning to extend his club and NL record of consecutive games reaching base to begin a season to 44. He has reached base safely in 46 straight games dating back to last season, the longest such streak for St. Louis since Jim Edmonds' 47-game run in 2004.
Set to face the Cardinals for the first time, Brett Anderson is coming off his longest outing of the season despite dealing with back tightness.
Anderson logged seven innings of two-run ball on Monday versus Atlanta, scattering seven hits and two walks in a no-decision. Though Anderson went without a victory for a third straight outing (0-1), Los Angeles managed a 6-3 win.
The left-hander is 2-2 with a 3.47 ERA on the year and eyes his first win since May 8. He has yielded three runs or fewer in all but one of his nine starts this year.
Los Angeles had won six of its past nine regular-season meetings with St. Louis coming into this series, but the Cardinals have bested the Dodgers in the playoffs in each of the previous two seasons. They beat the Dodgers in the 2013 NL Championship Series before topping them in last year's NL Divisional Series.
Sunday marks the one-year anniversary of Oscar Taveras' major league debut with the Cardinals. The former highly-touted prospect, who homered in that game, died at the age of 22 in an auto accident in his native Dominican Republic on Oct. 26 of last year.
The Cardinals will observe Oscar Taveras Day in this series finale. Taveras' parents are expected to be on hand and the club is also set to have a video tribute to the former player.