Martinez’s arm, bat help Cardinals to 5-3 win over Rockies

MIAMI, FL - JULY 31: Carlos Martinez #18 of the St. Louis Cardinals pitches during the game against the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park on July 31, 2016 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Rob Foldy/Getty Images)

MIAMI, FL - JULY 31: Carlos Martinez #18 of the St. Louis Cardinals pitches during the game against the Miami Marlins at Marlins Park on July 31, 2016 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Rob Foldy/Getty Images)

DENVER (AP) _ Carlos Martinez threw five effective innings and added a two-run double, helping the St. Louis Cardinals gain ground in the NL playoff race with a 5-3 win over the Colorado Rockies on Monday night.

The Cardinals moved within one game of wild card-leading New York after the Mets lost to Atlanta. San Francisco played later in Los Angeles against the Dodgers.

Martinez, who turns 25 on Wednesday, gave himself an early birthday present by holding Colorado to two runs while striking out six. The right-hander is 9-1 on the road this season.

Martinez (15-8) helped his own cause with a two-out double as part of a three-run fourth. He also was hit just below the left leg by a fastball from Tyler Anderson (5-6) in the third _ two pitches after Randal Grichuk lined a two-run homer.