Kansas City Royals starting pitcher Jason Hammel delivers a pitch to the St. Louis Cardinals in the second inning at Busch Stadium in St. Louis on May 22, 2018. Photo by Bill Greenblatt/UPI

Jason Hammel outdueled Luke Weaver as the Royals cut down the Cardinals 5-1 at Busch Stadium.  Hammel struck out six over seven innings of one-run ball for his first win of the season.  Alex Gordon and Salvador Perez hit home runs for Kansas City, which had lost three straight and eight of its previous nine games.  Weaver struck out eight, but gave up three runs in seven frames to fall to 3-and-4 with the loss.  Jose Martinez stole home in the first inning to account for the St. Louis run.

Martinez was left in no-man’s land on an attempted double steal and would have been out, but Mike Moustakas dropped the throw from Perez.  Not only did Perez go deep into the left field bullpen with a home run, but Perez also threw out two attempted base stealers on “strike ’em out, throw ’em out” double plays.

Greg Holland faced his former team in the ninth inning and left without retiring a batter.  A walk and three hits chased Holland who let the game open up to a four-run KC advantage before Mike Matheny pulled him from the game.  Weaver had pitched another good game, but lacked the big hit from his offense.  The Cardinals went 0-for-6 with runners in scoring position.