Kennedy, Diamondbacks visit Cards in series opener

Ian Kennedy tries to get back on track when he leads the Arizona Diamondbacks into St. Louis tonight for the opener of a three-game series with the Cardinals at Busch Stadium.

Kennedy was riding a personal four-game winning streak until he faced Pittsburgh at PNC Park last Wednesday in a 7-6 loss. He was reached for six runs -- five earned -- and eight hits in four innings to fall to 10-9 in 23 starts this season with a 4.34 earned run average.

The right-hander was pounded by the Cardinals in a 6-1 setback on May 8 in the desert and yielded six runs and six hits in seven innings. Kennedy is 1-2 with a 10.13 ERA in three career starts against St. Louis.

Arizona salvaged the finale of a three-game series versus Washington with Sunday's 7-4 triumph behind a strong outing from starter Patrick Corbin. Corbin allowed two runs, struck out seven and did not walk a batter in seven innings of work. J.J. Putz got the final two outs of the game for his 22nd save.

"I felt really good today coming in. I was able to keep the ball down, get ahead and throw my breaking ball and changeup when I wanted to," said Corbin. "I was able to get some easy outs that way."

Paul Goldschmidt knocked in three runs for the Diamondbacks, who had lost six of their previous eight games coming into Sunday.

The D-backs also will visit Houston for three games on this road trip and sit 4 1/2 games off the NL West lead.

St. Louis dropped two of three matchups in Philadelphia over the weekend and will begin a nine-game homestand Tuesday versus Arizona, Pittsburgh and Houston.

In Sunday's 8-7 loss in 11 innings, Phillies outfielder Juan Pierre legged out an infield single to score Jimmy Rollins with the game-winning run. Cardinals shortstop Rafael Furcal slipped before making a strong throw to first, but Pierre was able to beat the throw.

"I tried to come with a sinker inside and get it in on him," Cardinals reliever Barret Browning said. "He kind of fisted it to shortstop. He's got good speed and hit it in a place that was difficult to handle."

Lance Lynn started the game for the defending World Series champions and yielded four runs in five innings. Matt Carpenter went 4-for-6 with three RBI and Jon Jay recorded three hits, three runs scored and two runs batted in for St. Louis, which had won eight of 12 games.

Joe Kelly draws the start for the Cards tonight and he is 2-5 with a 3.47 earned run average in 11 starts. The rookie battled through a rough outing on Wednesday in a 15-0 loss to San Francisco and was tagged for seven runs -- four earned -- and nine hits in five innings. Kelly is 1-3 in seven starts at Busch Stadium and has never faced Arizona.

St. Louis swept a three-game series from the Diamondbacks back in early May at Chase Field and is unbeaten in the past five meetings between the teams.