Game Report: Brewers 2, Cardinals 1

The Cardinals’ offense had another struggling afternoon on Thursday in Milwaukee in falling to the Brewers.

It was the fifth time in their last seven games the Cardinals scored two runs or less and the team once again lost when a win would have put the Cardinals back at .500 for the first time since June 2. They are now 0-6 in those opportunities.

Here is how the game broke down:

At the plate: Held to just one hit through the first four innings by Matt Garza, the Cardinals took advantage of two walks to score their only run in the fifth, on an RBI single by Greg Garcia … They put at least one runner on base in each of the final four innings but could not score, stranding five runners and hitting into a double play. Three of the runners were left at second base … Matt Carpenter hit third, the first time he has been out of the leadoff spot since June 6, and was 0-of-4 … The Cardinals failed to score in 10 combined innings against Milwaukee relievers in the series.

On the mound: Michael Wacha was lifted for a pinch-hitter after just four innings, allowing the first Milwaukee run on a homer by Jesus Aguilar in the third. He gave up five hits, walked three and struck out five … The Brewers broke the 1-1 tie in the fifth with three consecutive singles off Brett Cecil.

Key stat: In his last seven games hitting somewhere other than leadoff, Carpenter is 3-of-27 and for the season has a .299 average hitting leadoff and a .204 average combined when he started either hitting second or third (38-of-186).

Worth noting: This was the 31st time in the first 108 games this season the Cardinals have scored two or fewer runs. They are 8-23 in those games … Dexter Fowler is expected to rejoin the team this weekend in Cincinnati, which would force the team to make a roster move. Randal Grichuk struck out in a pinch-hit appearance on Thursday and has three hits in his last 22 at-bats with 11 strikeouts … Adam Wainwright also said he should be able to pitch this weekend, although he is not listed as one of the projected starters for the weekend.

Looking ahead: Mike Leake is scheduled to start the opener against the Reds on Friday night, with Asher Wojceichowski the expected starter for Cincinnati. Lance Lynn is scheduled to start Saturday and Carlos Martinez on Sunday.


Mike Matheny Post-Game Interview