Adam Wainwright's stumble during his last start may have put a question mark at the end of his Cy Young resume. But Chris Carpenter's Monday start at Milwaukee put a big exclamation point at the end of his.
Carpenter one-hit the Brewers Monday in Milwaukee, allowing only an opposite field double in a complete game shut out. He ran his record to 16-3 with a 2.16 ERA.
Carpenter was much sharper Monday than he had been in his previous two starts, striking out 10 but still needing only 99 pitches to go the full nine innings.
Cardinals ace Chris Carpenter throws a pitch during his Monday complete game against the Brewers. AP photo.
Albert Pujols provided all the offense St. Louis would need, driving in a pair of runs and scoring the other on a Matt Holliday single in the Cardinals 3-0 win.
The Cubs beat the Pirates 4-2 to keep their slim division hopes alive. But The Cardinals cut the magic number to 14 with the victory over Milwaukee. Look for manager Tony La Russa to start getting his core position players and starters more rest as the Redbirds' grip on the Central Division title firms up.
If the Cardinals can go 12-11 the rest of the way, the Cubs would have to win 25 of their remaining 26 games to force a tie.
Cardinals Star of the Game: Carpenter.
Lowlight: Ryan Ludwick was 0-for-4 with a pair of strikeouts.