Elly De La Cruz scores game winner as Cincinnati Reds beat St. Louis Cardinals to win series

Elly De La Cruz scores the winner of Sunday's game in St. Louis.

Elly De La Cruz scores the winner of Sunday’s game in St. Louis.

ST. LOUIS — And on the sixth day, Elly De La Cruz hit base four times.

The Cincinnati Reds rookie sensation beat pitcher Adam Wainwright to sack on a pitch at first for a hit in the first inning, picked midfielder to drive in the even run in the third, walked on the eighth pitch from the plate appearance against Wainwright in the sixth, walked to start the eighth against triple-digit reliever Jordan Hicks and eventually scored from third on a hard-hit fly ball right to a fired shortstop.

The ensuing throw to the plate was just wide off the first base side as De La Cruz slid headfirst, and catcher Willson Contreras was out of time, losing the ball from his glove en route to do good measure.

It turned out to be the game-winner in a 4-3 Sunday win over the St. Louis Cardinals at Busch Stadium.

He also notched a fourth series victory in the last five for a high-energy team that has a winning record since stumbling to a 7-15 start as it heads to Kansas City for the second. stage of a long road trip that ends in Houston.

Since that 22-game start, the Reds are 24-20, which is by far the only winning record in the National League Central in that span.

The second best team in the division since April 24 is the Pittsburgh Pirates at 18-23 after their victory over the New York Mets on Sunday.

No wonder GM Nick Krall said he’s “not ruling anything out” when it comes to the possibility of buying at the trade deadline for a playoff push.

Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Hunter Greene pitches in the first inning of a baseball game against the St. Louis Cardinals on Sunday, June 11, 2023 in St. Louis.

Cincinnati Reds starting pitcher Hunter Greene pitches in the first inning of a baseball game against the St. Louis Cardinals on Sunday, June 11, 2023 in St. Louis.

The Reds won on Sunday on the return to rotation of rising ace Hunter Greene, who skipped a start with a sore hip.

Greene threw enough trouble early to heal a 3-3 one deep in the sixth before giving way to the bullpen.

He has a 2.08 ERA in his last three starts after a rocky start to the season through 10 starts.

This article originally appeared on Cincinnati Enquirer: Cincinnati Reds’ Elly De La Cruz scores game winner as Greene returns

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