Cubs beat Cards, move into tie atop NL Cen­tral

The Saline Courier - - SPORTS - By Steve Over­bey As­so­ci­ated Press

ST. LOUIS — Chicago Cubs pitcher Kyle

Hendricks has no log­i­cal ex­pla­na­tion for his suc­cess against the St. Louis Car­di­nals.

“Noth­ing in par­tic­u­lar, I think I’ve just been mak­ing good pitches,” Hendricks said.

That mas­tery con­tin­ued Wed­nes­day.

Hendricks struck out seven in seven in­nings and Ian Happ hit an RBI sin­gle in the sixth in­ning to break a score­less tie as Chicago beat St. Louis 2-0 and moved into a tie with the Car­di­nals atop the NL Cen­tral.

The teams have iden­ti­cal 57-50 records. The Car­di­nals have lost three of their last four.

Hendricks (8-8) im­proved to 8-0 in his last 11 starts against the Car­di­nals. Chicago has won all 11 of those games. He is 8-2 with a 2.74 ERA in 17 starts against St. Louis over his six-year ca­reer.

Hendricks al­lowed seven hits and didn’t walk a bat­ter in a 104-pitch ef­fort. He has al­lowed just one earned run over 23 in­nings in three starts (0.39) against St. Louis this sea­son.

“What he does plays well against them,” Chicago man­ager Joe Mad­don said. “They weren’t get­ting good swings on him. He was strong the whole way.”

St. Louis catcher Matt Wi­eters dou­bled off Hendricks in the third.

“He does what he does,

we got a lot of guys in scor­ing po­si­tion and he tight­ened his belt,” Wi­eters said.

Added St. Louis man­ager Mike Shildt: “Give him some credit, he’s a pitch­maker.”

Closer Craig Kim­brel picked his eighth save in 10 chances. He worked out of a jam in the ninth. With run­ners at sec­ond and third and one out, he got Wi­eters to ground out be­fore strik­ing out Yairo Munoz.

Happ, who was re­called from Triple-a Des Moines on Fri­day, sin­gled off Miles Miko­las (7-11) and scored Kris Bryant, who had reached on a one-out er­ror by third base­man Tommy Ed­man. An­thony Rizzo drew a walk, set­ting the stage for Happ’s run-scor­ing hit.

“To­day was a good day, it was nice to come through,” Happ said. “I think I’ve been putting to­gether re­ally good at-bats. And that’s the most im­por­tant part.

Happ was 1 for 12 be­fore the run-scor­ing hit.

“It was a good feel­ing for me,” Happ said.

Miko­las did not al­low an earned run over 5 2/3 in­nings. He gave up six hits, struck out three and walked one.

“I did all I could to keep that game close as long as I could,” Miko­las said.

Chicago scored an un­earned run in the eighth in­ning. Javier Baez hit a two-out dou­ble that was orig­i­nally ruled foul, but changed on video re­view. A pick-off throw to sec­ond from catcher Wi­eters skipped into the out­field and al­lowed Baez to score.

“We scored in more creative ways,” Mad­don said.

St. Louis failed to score de­spite lead­off dou­bles in the sec­ond, third and fourth in­nings.

Car­di­nals first base­man Paul Gold­schmidt, who en­tered the game with seven homers in his last eight games, had a pair of dou­bles.

MOV­ING UP

St. Louis LHP Adel­berto Me­jia, claimed on waivers from the Los Angeles An­gels on Wed­nes­day, was put on the ac­tive ros­ter prior to the game. RHP Daniel Ponce de Leon was sent to Triple-a Mem­phis. TRAINER’S ROOM Car­di­nals: INF Matt Car­pen­ter (right foot con­tu­sion) will con­tinue his re­ha­bil­i­ta­tion as­sign­ment at Triple-a Mem­phis on Thurs­day. He has gone 0 for 21 in seven games split be­tween Mem­phis and Dou­ble-a Spring­field. UP NEXT

St. Louis RHP Jack Flaherty (4-6, 4.17) will face LHP Jon Lester (9-6, 3.63) in the finale of the three­game se­ries on Thurs­day. Flaherty has al­lowed two runs or less in each of his last four starts. Lester is

3-4 with a 4.42 ERA in nine road starts com­pared to a 6-2, 2.95 ERA in 11 starts at home.

JEFF ROBER­SON/AP

St. Louis Car­di­nals’ Kolten Wong, right, is safe at sec­ond for a stolen base ahead of the tag from Chicago Cubs sec­ond base­man David Bote dur­ing the sixth in­ning of a base­ball game Wed­nes­day, July 31, 2019, in St. Louis.

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