Dan Uggla homered and drove in four runs and Hanley Ramirez was a home run shy of the cycle for the Florida Marlins, who won their ninth straight by beating up Mulder and the St. Louis Cardinals 9-1 Tuesday night.
"We beat the Nationals and we beat Milwaukee, but this was a test for us, to play a division-leading team," Wes Helms said. "We did our job."
Mulder (6-7) lasted only 1 2/3 innings, matching the shortest outing of his career. He gave up five runs on six hits in his second start since returning from a shoulder injury that sidelined him for more than two months.
Mulder said he'd visit with George Paletta, the team orthopedic consultant, on Wednesday.
"There's still something going on," Mulder said. "I'm obviously not right out there. It's not pain, it's just not right."
Scott Olsen allowed three hits in eight innings for Florida, which matched its longest winning streak of the year while staying close in the NL wild-card standings. The Marlins began a 12-game trip without manager Joe Girardi, who stayed at home with his pregnant wife while bracing for a possible hurricane.
Bench coach Gary Tuck, who filled in as interim manager, had it easy after the Marlins knocked out Mulder.
"It's fun for me, but it's tough without Joe," Tuck said. "Joe loves these kids and he's got them where they are now.
"I know he's back home somewhere enjoying it right now, but obviously his family comes first."
Girardi is expected to join the Marlins, who are 54-35 since an 11-31 start, no later than Thursday. Florida, which also got a homer from Josh Willingham, has outscored the opposition 53-29 during its winning streak.
Mulder, who entered this season as the winningest pitcher in the major leagues from 2001-05, has a 7.14 ERA. In his first start at home since June 3, Mulder struggled with both command and velocity, throwing 25 balls and 24 strikes and clocking in the mid-80s, according to the Busch Stadium radar.
"His velocity was down and it just didn't look like he had the bite on his off-speed pitches," Helms said. "I've faced him in years past and he can pop it pretty good and fool you pretty good on off speed."
Helms had a run-scoring single in the first and a two-run single to chase Mulder and cap a four-run second that put the Marlins ahead 5-1. Ramirez had an RBI triple off the base of the center-field wall and Uggla drove him in with a single earlier in the inning.
Preston Wilson hit the first leadoff home run of his career in the bottom of the first to tie the game at one. Olsen (11-7) didn't allow another hit until Gary Bennett singled to start the sixth, and with the help of three double plays he faced only one over the minimum through eight innings.
So thoroughly were the Cardinals dominated that they had no one left on base.
"To pitch like that, that's the ultimate goal," Olsen said. "Today was probably the best game I've had all year."
Olsen, a 22-year-old rookie, struck out four and walked one to win his second straight start after losing three in a row, exiting after throwing only 89 pitches. He also doubled and scored in the sixth, flied out to the warning track in right in the seventh and had a sacrifice bunt in the second.
|Dan Uggla finishes 3-for-4 with a two-run home run and four RBI in the victory. (AP)|
|Players of the Game|
|Hanley Ramirez, SS||5||3||3||1||0||0||0||.278|
|Dan Uggla, 2B||4||2||3||4||1||0||0||.296|
|Miguel Cabrera, 3B||4||1||2||0||1||1||1||.338|
|Josh Willingham, LF||3||1||1||1||2||1||2||.274|
|Wes Helms, 1B||5||0||3||3||0||0||4||.296|
|Cody Ross, RF||4||0||1||0||1||0||5||.228|
|Miguel Olivo, C||5||0||0||0||0||2||3||.277|
|Alfredo Amezaga, CF||4||1||1||0||1||1||0||.269|
|Scott Olsen, P||3||1||1||0||0||0||1||.186|
|a- Joe Borchard, PH||1||0||0||0||0||0||0||.219|
|Brian Moehler, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.077|
|a-popped out for Olsen in the 9th|
|2B - Hanley Ramirez (30, Sosa), Scott Olsen (2, Hancock)|
|3B - Hanley Ramirez (9, Mulder)|
|HR - Dan Uggla (21, Sosa), Josh Willingham (20, Sosa)|
|SH - Hanley Ramirez (5), Scott Olsen (6)|
|RBI - Hanley Ramirez (43), Dan Uggla 4 (79), Josh Willingham (62), Wes Helms 3 (32)|
|2-OUT RBI - Hanley Ramirez (17), Dan Uggla (26), Wes Helms 3 (18)|
|SB - Dan Uggla (6, 3rd base off Hancock/Bennett), Miguel Cabrera (8, 2nd base off Hancock/Bennett)|
|Team LOB - 10|
|DP - Cabrera-Uggla-Helms, Uggla-H. Ramirez-Helms, Uggla-Helms, H. Ramirez-Uggla-Helms|
|Scott Olsen (W,11-7)||8||3||1||1||1||4||1||4.24|
|Pitches-Strikes - Scott Olsen 89-59, Brian Moehler 7-6|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Scott Olsen 11-6, Brian Moehler 2-0|
|Batters Faced - Scott Olsen 25, Brian Moehler 3|
|St. Louis Cardinals|
|Preston Wilson, RF||4||1||1||1||0||1||0||.265|
|Scott Spiezio, LF-3B||3||0||0||0||0||0||0||.265|
|Albert Pujols, 1B||3||0||0||0||0||0||0||.321|
|Scott Rolen, 3B||3||0||0||0||0||0||0||.307|
|Tyler Johnson, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.000|
|Juan Encarnacion, CF||3||0||0||0||0||0||0||.282|
|Ronnie Belliard, 2B||2||0||1||0||1||0||0||.284|
|Aaron Miles, SS||2||0||0||0||0||1||1||.267|
|Jorge Sosa, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.130|
|So Taguchi, LF||1||0||0||0||0||0||1||.265|
|Gary Bennett, C||3||0||2||0||0||1||0||.252|
|Mark Mulder, P||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||.280|
|Josh Hancock, P||1||0||0||0||0||1||0||.000|
|Jose Vizcaino, SS||2||0||0||0||0||0||2||.206|
|HR - Preston Wilson (12, Olsen)|
|RBI - Preston Wilson (59)|
|DP - Belliard-Miles-Pujols, Vizcaino-Pujols|
|St. Louis Cardinals|
|Mark Mulder (L,6-7)||1.2||6||5||5||3||1||0||7.14|
|Pitches-Strikes - Mark Mulder 49-24, Josh Hancock 48-31, Jorge Sosa 45-26, Tyler Johnson 14-10|
|Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Mark Mulder 3-1, Josh Hancock 4-4, Jorge Sosa 2-3|
|Batters Faced - Mark Mulder 14, Josh Hancock 15, Jorge Sosa 12, Tyler Johnson 5|
|Attendance - 40663|
|Game Time - 2:42|
|Temperature - 67|
|Umpires - Home - Jim Reynolds, First Base - Kerwin Danley, Second Base - Gary Cederstrom, Third Base - Tim Welke|