July 14, 2013 by Ryan S
Matt Garza allowed ten hits and two walks in 6.2 innings, but the Cardinals (56-36) could not string anything together, and the Cubs (42-50) beat their division rivals 6-4, Saturday night.
The Cubs got 11 hits off Lance Lynn (11-4, 4.00 ERA), a career high for the Cardinals starter. Those hits, which included two home runs, led to six runs, which would be enough for the win.
Despite allowing ten hits, Garza (6-1, 3.17 ERA) dominated St. Louis all night. The Cubs hitters backed him up. Alfonso Soriano went 2-for-5 with a double and a homer, his ninth in the past 15 games. Luis Valbuena added a homer, and Starlin Castro went 2-for-5 with an RBI.
Castro’s batting average is up to .243 from a season low .228 on Jun. 23. In the 17 games since, Castro has accumulated a .306/.342/.472 line with three home runs.
So what was the drama? The Cardinals loaded the bases in the seventh inning with the tying run at the plate, but Matt Guerrier was able to get out of it unscathed.
In the eighth, Blake Parker allowed one run on a hit and a walk, but James Russell was able to retire the last two hitters of the inning and end the threat.
In the ninth, Kevin Gregg recorded his 17th save of the season, but not before allowing one run on a hit and two walks to draw the Cardinals within two runs.
The last three innings of the game were stressful and intense and the bullpen pitched far less than perfect, but the Cubs held on to victory. They take on the Cardinals tonight in the final game of the first half of the season.
Travis Wood (6-6, 2.69 ERA) takes on Adam Wainwright (12-5, 2.30 ERA) on ESPN at 8:05 PM ET/7:05 PM CT in game four of this weekend set.