ST. LOUIS — Tyler Glasnow is headed to the offseason on a high note.
Glasnow pitched five effective innings, but the Pittsburgh Pirates were shut down by Carlos Martinez in a 7-0 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals on Friday night.
Glasnow (0-2) allowed one run on Jedd Gyorko’s third-inning homer, but that was it. The rookie right-hander, one of Pittsburgh’s top prospects, walked four and struck four while throwing 79 pitches in his fourth start of the year.
“He pitched with conviction,” Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. “His curve played fairly well and he was able to pitch through traffic. He threw more strikes and pitched at a better pace.”
The 6-foot-8 Glasnow was coming off a rough start against Washington, when he allowed four runs and seven hits in three innings of a 10-7 loss. He said picking up his pace was a key to his improved performance.
“I was too slow and trying to do everything on timing rather than let it happen athletically,” Glasnow said.
Martinez (16-9) struck out nine in seven innings, helping St. Louis stay in the wild-card race. Brandon Moss and Matt Holliday also homered for the Cardinals.
St. Louis scored four runs in the sixth off Trevor Williams to open a 5-0 lead. Yadier Molina and Stephen Piscotty each had an RBI double, and Piscotty scored on Moss’ drive to right.
Holliday, out since Aug. 12 because of a thumb injury, was activated off the disabled list at his request Friday. The club informed him earlier this week that it is not planning to pick up the $17 million option on his contract for 2017.
Holliday was given a standing ovation before he stepped into the batter’s box in the seventh and was called out for a curtain call after he drove an 0-2 fastball into the right-field bullpen for his 20th homer.
“I still have chills,” Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. “It was a great crowd and every one of them made that extremely special for him. It meant a great deal to him, probably more than what words can describe.”
Holliday became the sixth Cardinals player to reach 20 homers this season, tying an NL record. It was the first pinch-hit homer and RBI of Holliday’s career.
“I have no idea how special that was for him but it was special for me,” said Pittsburgh manager Clint Hurdle, who managed Holliday during his time with the Colorado Rockies. “The career for him is not over but what a reception from a baseball town.”
The game was delayed by rain for 47 minutes before the bottom of the eighth.
Pirates: LF Starling Marte (back) was not in the lineup and is not expected to play in the final two games.
Pirates: RHP Chad Kuhl (5-4, 4.25 ERA) lasted two innings in his only start against the Cardinals, a 12-6 loss on Sept. 5.
Cardinals: RHP Michael Wacha (7-7, 4.93 ERA) has allowed 10 earned runs in 5 2/3 innings over three relief appearances since returning from the DL. He was picked to start Saturday’s game against the Pirates instead of struggling LHP Jaime Garcia.