By HAL McCOY
Scott Feldman is one interesting hombre — a man of Jewish faith who was born in Hawaii as a son of an FBI agent.
And on Sunday afternoon in St. Louis he was one fantastic pitcher while the Cincinnati Reds piled on the Cardinals, 8-0, in Busch Stadium.
Feldman pitched six-plus innings and held the Cardinals to no runs, four hits, walked one and struck out six.
FANS IN REDS COUNTRY asked, “Scott who?” when he was signed in January to a one-year $2.3 million contract.
He was signed to possibly pitch in long relief, if he made the team, with some possible spot starts as needed.
He was needed. Immediately. When Homer Bailey and Anthony DeSclafani were judged unusable to start the season, Feldman was not only thrust into the mix as a possible starter, he won a spot in the rotation. And he won the Opening Day assignment.
HE STRUGGLED A BIT ON Opening Day and was the loser to the Philadelphia Phillies, giving up three runs and seven hits in 4 2/3 innings.
But his second start Sunday was dazzling. Not a single Cardinal found third base and he took a three-hit shutout into the seventh and had retired eight straight, four on strikeouts.
But he issued his first and only walk to Matt Carpenter on a 3-and-2 count to open the seventh and gave up a single to Matt Adams and his day was done.
THE REDS, WHO LOST to the Cardinals 10-4 on Saturday, gave Feldman strong support with some help via defensive lapses by the Cardinals.
Adam Duvall, who had three hits, opened the scoring with a home run off Carlos Martinez leading off the second inning. Martinez was upset because he thought he had Duvall struck out on the pitch before the home run.
It stayed 1-0 until the fifth when Martinez hit Scott Schebler with a pitch and Zack Cozart tripled him home, extending Cozart’s hitting streak to six games to open the season.
Everything fell apart for Martinez and the Cardinals in the sixth when the Reds scored four runs on only two hits, with the Cardinals tossing in three errors during the inning.
Duvall’s third hit made it 3-0, two errors on the same play by third baseman Jhonny Peralta made it 4-0 and Schebler’s two-run double made it 6-0.
The seventh run came in the seventh on Billy Hamilton’s double and Jose Peraza’s single and Joey Votto homered in the ninth to make it 8-0.
MARTINEZ ENTERED THE game with a 5-and-1 career record against the Reds, 3-and-0 in St. Louis. But his pitching line this day was besmirched — five innings, six runs (five earned), six hits, one walk, three strikeouts, a wild pitch, two hit batsmen, a home run and a partridge in a pear tree.
After Feldman left, Blake Wood pitched two scoreless innings (one hit, one strikeout) and Tony Cingrani gave up a leadoff hit in the ninth, then retired the final three, two on strikeouts.
After issuing 12 walks in Saturday’s game, Feldman’s one walk was the only free pass issued by Reds pitchers.
The Reds banged 11 hits, three by Duvall and two by Suarez that including Duvall’s home run, Cozart’s triple and doubles by Stuart Turner, Schebler and Billy Hamilton.
So the Reds took two of three in St. Louis, winning both games via shutouts after Amir Garrett’s Friday gem. And the Reds have won four of their first six, three via shutouts.