MILWAUKEE — Cardinals closer Giovanny Gallegos fanned pinch-hitter Pablo Reyes with the bases loaded for the last out and St. Louis won its 10th game in a row, extending the lead in the playoff chase for the division-leading Milwaukee Brewers to hold off 2-1 Tuesday night.
The Cardinals increased their lead for the second NL wildcard spot to four games over Cincinnati. Philadelphia was 4 1/2 behind St. Louis while San Diego fell back five.
Milwaukee, which has secured a playoff spot, lost its third straight. The Brewers, whose magic number to make the NL Central remained at three, lead the Cardinals by 9 games.
Jake Woodford (3-3) and four relievers combined on a four-hitter as the Cardinals got closer to the longest winning streak in franchise history, 14 games in 1935. In their 130-year history, the Cardinals have had only 12 doubles -digit winning stripes.
It’s hard to capture because I don’t intend to finish it. We’ll keep moving forward into tomorrow, said Cardinals manager Mike Shildt. Regardless of what time of year you do that, it’s important that this time of year is clearly magnified more.
Avisail Garcia led off the Milwaukee ninth with a single and Lorenzo Cain grounded into a force out that was originally a double play, but the call was reversed by replay.
After Luis Urias walked, Cain took third place on a flyout. Christian Yelich was walked intentionally and Gallegos struckout Reyes for his eleventh save and eighth in nine chances in September.
Even if he’s not as sharp, he’ll still find a way to compete and you can live with that, Shidt said. He did that tonight.
The Brewers are 2-5 in their last seven games, scoring a total of eight points in their five defeats.
We’ve just had a quiet week, said Brewers manager Craig Counsell. I think we’d have a big night one of these nights. We would put a very large number on the board and jump out. We didn’t do it tonight, but it’s coming. I believe that, I think our boys believe that.
St. Louis scored a run in the first without hit off Brandon Woodruff (9-10) and added a run in the eighth on Tommy Edman’s RBI single.
The Brewers scored once in the eighth off of Luis Garcia when pinch-hitter Daniel Vogelbach walked, Kolten Wong doubled and Willy Adames followed with a sacrifice fly.
Woodford gave up only two hits in five innings, struckout five and walked one. Alex Reyes and Genesis Cabrera each followed with a hitless inning.
You try to stay in the moment and not make it bigger than it is, Woodford said. It’s still a normal start and try to treat it that way. But hey, we do know that every win is big at this point in the year.
After the run in the first inning, Woodruff gave up a few hits in the third inning in six innings, struckout 10 and walked two.
Edman generated a run for the Cardinals in the first. He walked nine pitches to lead, stole second, took third on a groundout and scored on Tyler ONeill’s sacrifice fly.
The Cardinals made it 2-0 in the eighth when pinch-hitter Lars Noobaar walked with one out, the second stole and scored on Edmans’ second hit.
It’s impressive, Adames said of the rise of the cardinals. They know they have to keep winning to make it through the postseason. They played a really good ball. They do the little things and I think that’s why they’ve been so good now. You have to give them credit.
Cardinals: RHP Jack Flaherty, at the 10-day IL since August 25 with a right shoulder strain, threw about 15 pitches to teammates in a simulated game. He looked like Jack. So look closely at how he recovers and properly evaluate what the next step is, Shidt said.
Brewers: LHP Brett Anderson, on the IL since September 2 after being lined out in the pitching shoulder, is scheduled to activate and begin Wednesday’s game against St. Louis. Cain was not in the starting lineup for the third game in a row. Cain came out of Saturday’s game with a sore groin after crashing into the wall on a sensational catch. Cain pinch-hit in the seventh and stayed in midfield.
OF Tyrone Taylor was reinstated from the 10-day injured list. RHP Miguel Sanchez got an option on Triple-A Nashville.
Cardinals: RHP Miles Mikolas (1-2, 4.50) starts the third game of the series on Wednesday. Mikolas gave up three hits in 5 2/3 scoreless innings in his last start for his first win since 2019.
Brewers: LHP Brett Anderson (4-8, 4.18) is slated to come off the IL for his first start since Sept. 1. Counsell said Anderson would likely make a short start followed by the bullpen.
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