(SportsNetwork.com) - The St. Louis Cardinals have a good chance at bouncing back with Michael Wacha set to take the hill Thursday afternoon against the Cleveland Indians in the finale of a three-game series.
The Cardinals have won each of Wacha's six starts this season and he is 5-0 with a 2.09 earned run average. Wacha was in action last Friday in an 8-5 win at Pittsburgh and allowed three runs (2 earned) over six innings and improved to 3-0 with a 1.86 ERA on the road.
Wacha has never faced the Indians.
John Lackey was dealt the loss in Wednesday's 2-0 defeat at Progressive Field and gave up both runs in 5 1/3 innings. Jhonny Peralta had the only hit for St. Louis, which couldn't solve Indians starter Corey Kluber. Kluber struck out 18 batters and allowed the lone hit in eight innings.
"You don't strike out that many guys if you're not on top of your game," said Cardinals manager Mike Matheny. "He made pitches all night long."
St. Louis lost for just the fourth time in 15 games.
Cardinals slugger Matt Holliday left the game in the second inning after taking a pitch off his left elbow. X-rays were negative and he is day-to-day.
"He's sore," said Matheny. "It got him in a bad spot. He had trouble getting the soreness out to where he could finish the swing."
Kluber matched Indians legend Bob Feller for most strikeouts in a nine-inning game in franchise history. Feller struck out 18 Tigers in on Oct. 2, 1938.
"Any time that your name gets thrown in with Bob Feller, that's obviously very humbling and a great accomplishment," said Kluber. "But more importantly, we got the win."
Cody Allen closed the door in the ninth for his fifth save.
Brandon Moss and David Murphy had RBI singles in the first inning to provide the scoring for the Indians, who have won two of three games.
Trevor Bauer gets the call for the Tribe Thursday and is 2-1 with a 4.19 ERA in six starts. Bauer lost his last outing on Friday against Minnesota and allowed five runs in five innings of a 9-3 setback.
Bauer has allowed 11 runs in his past two outings and will face the Cardinals for the first time. He is 1-1 with a 6.75 ERA in four home starts.
This is the first series between these teams since the 2012 season.