- Associated Press - Thursday, May 5, 2016

ST. LOUIS (AP) - Phillies starter Jerad Eickhoff got an early jolt. Once he recovered, he stuck around for a while.

Eickhoff bounced back from Brandon Moss’ long homer and didn’t permit another run until the seventh Thursday as Philadelphia fell to the St. Louis Cardinals 4-0.

“I was able to settle in and keep them off-balance for the most part,” Eickhoff said. “It took a little longer to get my feel, but it came along later in the game.”

Eickhoff (1-4) allowed six hits and three runs over six-plus innings. He struck out two and walked two in his sixth start of the season.

“He looked uncomfortable, but he battled through it,” Philadelphia manager Pete Mackanin said. “He battled without his best stuff, a good sign.”

It was 1-0 when Eickhoff walked Yadier Molina to start the seventh and then committed the first balk of his major league career. Jeremy Hazelbaker followed with a hit to end Eickhoff’s day.

“I can move forward off this,” Eickhoff said.

The Cardinals went on to score three times in the seventh. They won three times in the four-game series.

Jaime Garcia (2-2) gave up two hits in seven innings. He threw 82 pitches, 61 for strikes.

“Basically, he had us eating out of his hands,” Mackanin said. “He did everything you could ask a pitcher to do.”

Stephen Piscotty drove in two runs and also made an outstanding catch in right field to help preserve the shutout.

Moss launched a drive estimated at 462 feet to right field in the first. It was the longest homer by a left-handed hitter in the history of the new Busch Stadium, which opened in 2006.

“I feel like I hit it really well,” Moss said. “I’m still searching for consistency, but I’ll take that one. Any homer is a good homer.”

Cardinals closer Trevor Rosenthal took over to pitch the ninth and gave up two quick singles.

Andres Blanco followed with a foul flyball to right and Piscotty ran a long way, then made a hard, headfirst dive onto the dirt for the catch.

The Phillies threatened in the fifth after Cameron Rupp and Tyler Goeddel singled, but Peter Bourjos lined into a double play.

St. Louis scored three times in the seventh. Ruben Tejada hit a sacrifice fly and Piscotty delivered a bases-loaded double with two outs.

The Phillies have scored just eight runs over the last four games. They were shut out twice.

“We’re not frustrated at all,” shortstop Freddy Galvis said. “That’s baseball right there. Sometimes you’re going to score runs, sometimes you’re not. We’ll be fine. We just have to keep working.”

UP NEXT

Phillies: RHP Vince Velasquez (4-1, 1.44) will open a three-game series at Miami on Friday. He has not allowed an earned run in three of five starts this season. He will be opposed by LHP Wei-Yin Chen (2-1, 4.26) The Phillies are in the middle of a 10-game road trip.

Cardinals: RHP Carlos Martinez (4-1, 2.60) faces Pittsburgh LHP Francisco Liriano (2-1, 3.86) in the opener of a three-game series on Friday. Martinez had pitched at least six innings in all five starts this season.

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