So what else is new? Chris Carpenter takes the mound and the Cardinals win. Tonight, Carpenter, who improved his record to 12-3, pitched seven innings, gave up 2 runs on 8 hits and 0 walks, and struck out 10 Reds batters. The three runs that the Cardinals got off Homer Bailey in the first inning were all they needed, as the Cardinals beat the Reds 5-2 and won the rubber match of their three game series. Albert Pujols hit his 38th homer, Matt Holliday went 3 for 4, and Ryan Franklin picked up his 28th save.
The Cubs, who entered the evening three games back of the Cardinals, got killed 12-5 by the Philadelphia Phillies. Jeff Samardzija (1-2) only was able to go 3 1/3 innings, and gave up 7 runs on 8 hits in his first start of his career. He was clearly no match for the vaunted Phillies lineup which hit him early and often. Pedro Martinez, who made his first comeback start for the Phillies, gave up 3 runs on 7 hits but struck out 5 and only walked one batter to get the win.
The Cardinals improved their record to 64-52, which ties their season high of 12 games over .500. They now hold a 4 game lead over the Chicago Cubs who with the loss fell to 58-54. The Cubs do not get a break as they go up against red-hot Cliff Lee tomorrow against the Phillies in a day game at Wrigley, while the Cardinals have Thursday off and will rest for their weekend series against the Padres at Busch Stadium.