DENVER — Matt Carpenter led off the game with a double to right.
It was the start of a double feature — a big day for him and another big series win for the Cardinals.
Carpenter tied a St. Louis record with four doubles, pitcher Austin Gomber had a two-run infield single in a six-run first inning and the Cardinals routed the Colorado Rockies 12-3 on Sunday.
Carpenter matched a franchise mark that Joe "Ducky" Medwick set on Aug. 4, 1937, against the Boston Bees (now Braves). Carpenter doubled twice in the first, had another in the third and lined his fourth in the seventh on a day when St. Louis pounded out 16 hits. The first baseman wound up 4 for 5 with two RBIs.
The Cardinals took two of three from the Rockies in a series between NL playoff contenders. It was the ninth straight series St. Louis has captured.
"I don't know why it couldn't last for the rest of the year," Carpenter said. "I don't see why it shouldn't, why it couldn't."
The score was 6-0 before many of the fans even had time to settle into their seats. The Cardinals sent 11 batters to the plate in a wild first and had seven hits off Tyler Anderson, including a two-run homer by Tyler O'Neill. Anderson later intentionally walked Yairo Munoz to get to Gomber, who bounced a high hopper for an infield hit. A hustling Harrison Bader scored from second.
The runs in the first were scored with two outs.
"For us to come out early and put up that 6-spot, it makes my job a lot easier," Gomber said.
Wearing "Big G" on the back of his uniform as part of Players' Weekend, Gomber (4-0) threw six efficient innings and allowed two runs, one earned, to become the first left-handed Cardinals starter to win at Coors Field since Kent Mercker on July 24, 1999.
"Does it show how well (Gomber pitched) or show how few lefties we've had?" Carpenter joked. "Gomber was outstanding."
Despite St. Louis leading 10-2 after three innings, the crowd predominantly stayed around. This provided a big incentive: A screening of "The Sandlot" at the ballpark following the game.
Anderson (6-7) was booed as he walked off the mound after allowing six runs and getting just two outs. He was replaced by Chad Bettis.
The left-hander has been tinkering with a new release point to better utilize his 6-foot-3 frame. He hasn't won since July 4, and has a 15.09 ERA over his last three outings.
"Whatever I was trying to go to wasn't working," Anderson said. "Sometimes when you're making pitches they're on the corners, and sometimes they're just off. Sometimes when you're going for the corners you miss middle, which is what's been happening."
Cardinals: RHP Mike Mayers was placed on the 10-day DL with shoulder inflammation and RHP Dominic Leone (right arm nerve irritation) was activated from the 60-day DL. Leone pitched a perfect ninth. ... 2B Kolten Wong wasn't in the starting lineup a day after straining his left hamstring running out a grounder.
Rockies: OF Charlie Blackmon was rested.
EXPOUNDING ON EXPANDING ROSTERS
Although active rosters are expanding at the end of the month, manager Bud Black would like to see a cap on the number of players that can be used on game day. For instance, a maximum of 27.
"Now you're talking," Black said. "For five months, you play a certain roster and then at the most critical time of the year you have all this weaponry, potentially, at your disposal. I don't know if that's right."
Carpenter heard the "M-V-P!" chants from fans after the game.
"It was a neat experience," he said.
One of his main rivals for the award figures to be Rockies third baseman Nolan Arenado.
DID HE DO THAT?
The talk after the game was about Bader scoring from second on Gomber's chopper. It certainly impressed Carpenter.
"You don't see that very often. He's just a special baserunner," Carpenter said.
Cardinals: RHP Jack Flaherty (7-6, 2.97 ERA) takes the mound Tuesday when the Cardinals open a three-game series against Pittsburgh. Flaherty needs six strikeouts to reach 150 and tie Paul Dean (1934) for sixth-most in a season for a rookie in Cardinals history.
Rockies: Start a two-game series Monday at the Los Angeles Angels. RHP Jon Gray (10-7, 4.67) goes for Colorado.