DENVER (AP) — Adam Wainwright kept up his mastery of the Rockies by scattering three hits over seven innings, Tommy Pham hit a two-run homer and the St. Louis Cardinals beat Colorado 3-0 on Saturday night.
Wainwright (5-3) struck out six and retired the last 10 batters he faced as he moved to 10-1 with a 1.56 ERA over his career against Colorado.
Yadier Molina extended his hitting streak to 16 games with a run-scoring single in the third. Pham had the big blow in the fifth, when he lined a slider from Rockies left-hander Kyle Freeland (5-3) into the left-center seats.
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The Cardinals withstood a scare in the eighth, with Trevor Rosenthal working his way out of a bases loaded jam by getting Carlos Gonzalez to ground out. Seung Hwan Oh pitched the ninth for his 11th save in 13 chances.
Freeland lasted six innings and gave up three runs for the NL-leading Rockies. He couldn’t follow the lead of fellow rookie Antonio Senzatela, who threw eight shutout innings the night before.
Wainwright & Co. wore camouflage green hats and matching socks for Memorial Day weekend. He confused the Rockies all night by mixing his hard-to-hit curveball with a cutter.
And this was definitely more like the Wainwright of old, not the one who struggled through April with a 2-3 mark.
He’s gone 3-0 in May and rediscovered the touch on his curve. That was apparent in a 10-pitch at-bat to Gonzalez in the fourth, when Wainwright threw seven curves, including the one that finally struck out Gonzalez. Wainwright also froze Trevor Story in the same inning with a 92-mph fastball.
Freeland worked his way out of early trouble courtesy of two double plays. St. Louis has now hit into six double plays in splitting the first two games of the series.
Cardinals: 2B Kolten Wong was a late scratch from the lineup with left elbow stiffness.
The Cardinals purchased the contract of RHP John Brebbia from Triple-A Memphis and designated lefty Miguel Socolovich for reassignment. Brebbia turns 27 on Tuesday.
THIS & THAT
Wainwright made his 330th appearance for the Cardinals to tie Larry Jackson (1955-62) for 10th on the team’s all-time list. … OF Ian Desmond had two singles. … The Rockies were shut out at home for a third time this season. … The attendance was 48,106, the highest since the home opener.
Mark Reynolds credits St. Louis hitting coach John Mabry for revamping his swing when he was with Cardinals in 2015.
“Really changed my mind from an approach of all-or-nothing to keeping my barrel in the zone as much as I can,” explained Reynolds, who’s hitting .316 this season. “It’s what I’ve been trying to do the past couple of years.”
Cardinals: RHP Lance Lynn (4-2, 2.53 ERA) is holding right-handed hitters to a league-low .124 average.
Rockies: RHP German Marquez (3-2, 3.86 ERA) will be the third straight rookie the Rockies have sent out against St. Louis in this series. He’s 3-0 with a 0.95 ERA over his last three starts.
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