Wainwright, Fowler clutch
ST. LOUIS — Adam Wainwright has pitched in his share of big games throughout a distinguished career. Taking the mound against an ace in a matchup with postseason implications, he delivered once more.
Wainwright put on another sharp performance to top Max Scherzer, right fielder Dexter Fowler made a sensational catch and the NL Central-leading Cardinals beat the Nationals 5-1 on Wednesday.
“That’s as good as it gets right there in the regular season, competing against a future Hall of Famer and against a great quality team,” Wainwright said.
Wainwright (13-9) has won all four of his starts this month, allowing just one earned run in 27 innings. The 38-year-old righty limited the Nationals to an unearned run in seven innings.
Trailing by four, the Nationals put two on with one out in the eighth. Asdrubal Cabrera hit a drive off Andrew Miller that had the distance to leave the park, but Fowler jumped and reached far over the wall to make the grab.
“Dexter earned his Air Jordans,” Cardinals manager Mike Shildt said. “That was a big time play.”
Tommy Edman and Matt Wieters homered for the Cardinals, who began the day with a two-game division lead over the Cubs and Brewers. The Cardinals play the Cubs seven times in their final 10 games, beginning with a four-game series at Wrigley Field that starts Thursday.
The Nationals started the day with a 1 lead over the Cubs and Brewers in the NL wildcard race. The Nats have lost nine of its last 14.
The Cardinals’ Adam Wainwright improved to 4-0 in September with a win Wednesday.