ST. LOUIS (AP) — This time, the St. Louis Cardinals got some help from the bad weather.
Only hours after enduring two rain delays totaling 5 hours, 32 minutes that pushed the end of their loss to the Kansas City Royals to 3:14 a.m. Friday, the Cardinals never got started against the San Francisco Giants.
The Giants and Cardinals were postponed by inclement weather Friday night — no rain had fallen at Busch Stadium before the game was called — that included tornado warnings in the area. The teams will play a day-night doubleheader Saturday.
San Francisco needed a break, too.
“You hate to see a rain-out but we probably have a couple of guys who could use a day. So, a split-doubleheader,” Giants manager Bruce Bochy said. “It’s the last time we see this club, so it leaves no choice in the manner right now. We’ll play two.”
Both teams will stick with their scheduled starters for both games Saturday. The Giants Matt Cain (4-2) will face Shelby Miller (5-3) in the opener, followed by Madison Bumgarner (4-3) vs. Cardinals ace Adam Wainwright (7-3) in the nightcap.
That’s if weather permits. The forecast calls for a 60 percent chance of rain throughout the day.
The postponement was the 26th this season, including one after the Boston Marathon bombings. The 26 tops the total for all of last season, according to STATS. Last year there were 21 games postponed.
The Cardinals closed their locker room and didn’t make manager Mike Matheny available to the media after the game was called.
The off night came at a good time for St. Louis. Many of the players didn’t leave after Thursday’s game until around 4 a.m. Friday.
The late-night loss to Kansas City on snapped a four-game winning streak for the Cardinals. They went 20-7 in May.
Matheny was asked prior to the game against the Giants if the previous marathon evening would adversely affect his team.
“I’ll tell you later,” he said. “The guys all slept in. We had a late arrival day today. I’m not sure how exactly it’s going to affect them. We haven’t had a really favorable schedule. We’ve had plenty of these days where we didn’t get much sleep and right back on the horse the next day.
“We made it very clear, this could be an opportunity to complain and have an excuse,” Matheny said. “I just don’t think it’s in our nature.”
Bochy said the delay did provide needed rest for players such as Angel Pagan. The outfielder has nursed a hamstring injury throughout May.
“Right now, I’ll put it at 50-50 tomorrow,” Bochy said. “He still feels a little something there, so we’ll wait until he gets there tomorrow and we’ll look at him. It won’t be in the first game, but maybe the second. If not, than Sunday.”
Bochy also announced prior to the game that Pablo Sandoval would likely miss the entire St. Louis series if not a full week because of a strain in his right foot. An MRI showed a treatable injury, Bochy said, and the team hopes to keep their third baseman off the disabled list.
San Francisco arrived in St. Louis having lost five of eight. On Thursday, the Giants beat Oakland to end a three-game skid. They play 12 of their next 14 games on the road.