St. Louis, MO – For the second straight day, a St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher slashed through a slumping Colorado lineup.
Adam Wainwright kept the Rockies hitless for 7 1/3 innings en route to the Cardinals' second consecutive shutout, a 3-0 victory over Colorado on Saturday at Busch Stadium.
Shelby Miller tossed a one-hitter for St. Louis on Friday by retiring the final 27 batters he faced, and Wainwright (5-2) sliced through the struggling Rockies order until Nolan Arenado lined a base hit up the middle with one away in eighth.
It was the longest no-hit bid of Wainwright's career. He would give up one more hit in the ninth and finished with seven strikeouts and a walk.
"Once you see Shelby mow through a lineup like he has been all year, you feel like you've got to go out there and do it too," Wainwright said. "Or else the guys will think there's a new sheriff in town."
Allen Craig went 3-for-3 with a sacrifice fly, Yadier Molina had two hits -- including an RBI single -- and Matt Adams drove in a run to help the Cardinals collect their ninth win in 10 games.
After Eric Young led off Friday's game with a single, the Rockies didn't record a base runner until Wainwright issued a walk to Todd Helton in the fifth. Forty straight batters for Colorado came to the plate without reaching base over the stretch.
Jhoulys Chacin (3-2) was erratic over five innings, allowing two runs on eight hits and three walks while striking out five. The Rockies, losers of a season- high four straight games, will look to salvage the three-game set on Sunday.
The Cardinals were all over Chacin early, but were unable to push a run across despite loading the bases twice in the first four innings. However, they took advantage when they packed the bags again in the fifth.
Matt Carpenter had the first of three straight singles to leadoff the frame and a run came home when Craig lifted a sacrifice fly into center field. Two batters later, Adams drove a two-out base hit into right to put the Cards ahead 2-0.
That was all the support Wainwright would need, as he kept the Rockies off the base paths up until the fifth when Helton was able to draw a one-out walk.
He fanned Young to end the sixth and after getting Dexter Fowler and Carlos Gonzalez to line out to start the seventh, he struck out Troy Tulowitzki to leave him six outs away from the first Cardinals no-hitter since Bud Smith accomplished the feat in 2001.
St. Louis added to its advantage in the bottom of the seventh when Molina sprayed an RBI base hit into center, giving the Cards a three-run cushion.
Wainwright retired his ninth batter in a row when Carpenter made a tough play in the hole at second to rob Helton of a base hit, but Arenado followed and lined a single into center to end Wainwright's bid.
"I was just trying to hit the ball hard," Arenado said. "We know he's pitching a great game, and we haven't been getting a lot of hits lately. We try not to think about, 'Let's get a hit here.'"
Nevertheless, the Cardinals starter stayed resilient and set down the final two batters of the inning. He then worked around a two-out single from Fowler in the ninth to finish off the shutout.
The Cardinals tied an MLB record for most consecutive batters retired by one team versus another. The last team to retire 40 straight hitters was when the Rangers did it to the Tigers in 1996 ... Molina extended his hitting streak to 11 games ... Colorado has scored only three runs over its four-game losing streak ... St. Louis left fielder Matt Holliday left at the end of the eighth inning with a twisted right ankle.