Wainwright tries to find win column versus Padres

Adam Wainwright looks to get back on track when he takes the ball for the St. Louis Cardinals Tuesday against the San Diego Padres.

Wainwright had won five of his last six decisions until dropping a 5-2 contest against the New York Mets on Thursday, when he was tagged for four runs -- three earned -- and six hits in six innings.

The right-hander, who was coming off a two-hit shutout of Colorado on May 11, dropped to 5-3 in nine starts to go along with a 2.51 ERA. In five road starts this season, Wainwright is 3-1 with a 3.48 ERA. He has made eight lifetime appearances (5 starts) against San Diego, going 3-2 with a solid 1.36 ERA.

Shelby Miller didn't have his best stuff for the Cardinals in Monday's 4-2 loss and was touched for three runs and five hits in 5 2/3 innings.

"It was one of those games where they fouled off a lot of pitches again and got his pitch count up and ran it up too high for him to really get himself out of trouble late in the game," Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said of Miller's outing.

Jon Jay had two hits, while Yadier Molina and Carlos Beltran both scored runs for the Cardinals, who have alternated wins and losses in their last six games and still lead the NL Central by 1 1/2 games over Cincinnati.

St. Louis kicked off its eight-game road trip on a bad note and look to even this set in San Diego tonight. First baseman David Freese was scratched from Monday's lineup with swelling on his right hand due to a laceration suffered on Sunday and is day-to-day. He needed three stitches to close the cut.

"It's fine," Freese said. "Just a little swollen. But I can do everything."

The Padres have won three in a row and five of seven games.

In Monday's win, starter Jason Marquis improved to 6-2 by holding the Cardinals to two runs -- one earned -- in six innings.

"I feel like I'm taking it one pitch at a time, trying to stay away from that big inning and really focus on that pitch at that particular moment instead of the big picture," Marquis said of his recent success.

Dale Thayer, Joe Thatcher, Luke Gregerson and Huston Street combined for three scoreless innings of relief. Street tossed the ninth for his 11th save.

Will Venable homered, Chris Denorfia went 3-for-4 with an RBI and Everth Cabrera posted two hits and a run scored in the win.

Edinson Volquez draws the start for the Friars tonight and he is 3-4 with a 5.55 earned run average in nine starts. He was 3-0 in five outings until a 6-2 loss to Washington on Thursday, as he allowed five runs and five hits in five innings. It was his shortest outing since lasting 3 1/3 frames April 13.

Volquez, a right-hander, hasn't had much success against St. Louis in his career, going 2-4 with a 5.32 ERA in eight starts.

This marks the first meeting between St. Louis and San Diego this season. The teams split six meetings a year ago.