Lance Lynn turned around his recent struggles and Matt Holliday and Carlos Beltran each drove in a pair of runs Thursday to help the Cardinals take three of four games against Colorado.
Although he was a little bit shaky early, Lynn recovered to pitch six innings shut out innings with only four hits and a pair of walks allowed. He struck out seven. The win improves Lynn's record to 11-4 with a 3.41 ERA as he heads to his first All-Star Game appearance in Kansas City.
Both of Lynn's walks came in the first inning, starting the game with two on and one out before getting Michael Cuddyer to pop out to catcher and Tyler Colving to strike out swinging. After that, it was pretty much smooth sailing.
The Cardinals served up their big blow in the fifth inning when they loaded the bases with no out in attempt to pad a 1-0 lead.
Rafael Furcal -- who still seems to be grasping for consistency -- struck out looking and made Redbirds rooters nervous. But Jon Jay fought back from being behind in the count to draw a walk to push in one run. Holliday, who drove in the Birds' first run in the opening inning, hit a two-strike single between the shortstop and third baseman to make the score 3-0 and Beltran just missed a grand slam with a rocket off the centerfield wall for a two-run double. The Cardinals added a sixth run on a grounder from Allen Craig. The Rockies tried for the play at the plate and Holliday was able to elude the tag to tally an important extra run.
Matt Carpenter started the game at second base as manager Mike Matheny tried to keep his bat in the order with Craig taking the bulk of the playing time at first base and Lance Berkman nearing a return from the disabled list. Although Craig got roughed up a little bit near the bag as he struggled with his footwork on a potential double play, the move paid off at the plate as Carpenter had a hit and a pair of walks in three plate appearances.
Cardinals Star of the Game: Lynn.
Cardinals Play of the Game: Beltran's bases loaded homer to break the game open in the fifth.
Lowlight: Allen Craig and Yadier Molina continued their recent slumping. Both were 0-for-4 on the night. Craig dipped below the .300 mark and Yadi's getting close. It looks like they need a little rest after a week of games in 100-degree temperatures.