Carpenter homers in 6th straight, Cards top Cubs for split
Matt Carpenter homered for the sixth consecutive game and Paul DeJong hit a tiebreaking double in St. Louis' three-run ninth inning, helping the Cardinals beat the Chicago Cubs 6-3 on Saturday to split their day-night doubleheader.
Carpenter entered as a defensive replacement in the sixth and hit a solo drive in the seventh for his fifth homer in the past two days. He also had a solo shot in the opener after he went 5 for 5 with three homers and seven RBIs while playing just six innings in St. Louis' 18-5 victory on Friday.
Carpenter became the first player in Cardinals history to homer in six consecutive games during one season. He matched the club record held by Mark McGwire, who connected in six straight games over two years.
The Cardinals trailed 3-2 before Yairo Munoz hit a tying single with two outs in the eighth. DeJong came up with runners on first and second in the ninth and doubled to left field against Steve Cishek.
Tommy Pham added a two-run double as St. Louis improved to 7-5 against NL Central-leading Chicago this season. Sam Tuivailala (2-3) pitched a scoreless eighth for the win and Bud Norris got three outs for his 18th save on a blustery day at Wrigley Field.
It was one sweet swing for DeJong, who committed a costly error in Chicago's three-run sixth. He also bounced into a critical double play during St. Louis' 7-2 loss in the opener.
Anthony Rizzo had four hits from the leadoff spot and Mike Montgomery pitched six effective innings, but the Cubs' bullpen was unable to close it out. Justin Wilson (3-3) took the loss after walking the first two batters in the ninth.
Rizzo also reached four times in Game 1, including three walks and a leadoff triple. The big first baseman is batting .542 (13 for 24) in seven games since manager Joe Maddon put him in the leadoff spot to try to jolt him out of a slump.
The Cubs grabbed the opener behind Tyler Chatwood (4-5), who pitched into the sixth inning for his first win since May 11. Ben Zobrist went 4 for 4, Javier Baez had three hits and two RBIs, and Tommy La Stella also drove in two runs in the makeup of an April 16 rainout.
"I thought we just really worked the field well," Maddon said. "A lot of good at-bats."
St. Louis pulled within one on Yadier Molina's sacrifice fly in the seventh, but Chicago responded with four runs in the bottom half. Baez drove in Jason Heyward with a bloop double, Victor Caratini had a sacrifice fly and La Stella capped the burst with a two-out, two-run single.
The Cardinals finished with just two hits. Luke Weaver (5-9) allowed three runs and seven hits in four-plus innings.
"It's one of those days that's frustrating and you just have to give it everything you've got," Weaver said.
Jesse Chavez pitched two perfect innings during Game 1 in his debut with Chicago, which acquired the veteran reliever in a trade with Texas on Thursday. He was added to the roster when the Cubs placed right-hander Anthony Bass on the 10-day disabled list as part of a flurry of moves before the opener.
Cardinals: RHP Carlos Martinez was put on the 10-day disabled list with a right oblique strain. The move is retroactive to Friday, a day after Martinez struggled through five innings in a 9-6 loss to the Cubs. RHP Miles Mikolas was activated from the paternity list and reliever John Brebbia was recalled from Triple-A Memphis. The Cardinals had an open roster spot after reliever Matt Bowman was sent down following their victory on Friday.
Cubs: LHP Jose Quintana starts Sunday for the first time since July 10. He has been working on his changeup with pitching coach Jim Hickey, but Maddon said Quintana also has been dealing with some shoulder fatigue. "Nothing awful," Maddon said. "Just give him a couple extra days."
Mikolas (10-3, 2.79 ERA) and Quintana (8-6, 3.96 ERA) pitch in the finale of the five-game set. Mikolas is 2-0 with a 3.94 ERA in three July starts. Quintana is 3-2 with a 2.81 ERA in six career starts against St. Louis.