MILWAUKEE (WSAU-TSN) - Adam Wainwright won his 12th game of the season as the St. Louis Cardinals pounded the reeling Milwaukee Brewers, 10- 2, in the middle test of a three-game set.
Wainwright (12-4) surrendered two runs on five hits and struck out five over seven innings for the Cardinals, who have won eight of their last 11 games to move into a first-place tie with Milwaukee atop the NL Central.
"I did an interview a week ago talking about was it time to start looking at why the season was such a disappointment? My quote was, in a week from now we could be doing a completely different kind of interview," Wainwright said of the Cardinals being tied for first in the division.
Tony Cruz had two hits and three RBI, Jhonny Peralta posted two hits, two RBI and scored a pair of runs, Matt Carpenter recorded two hits, an RBI and scored two runs and Kolten Wong smacked a two-run homer in the triumph.
Jimmy Nelson (1-1) allowed eight runs -- six earned -- on eight hits and two walks over 4 1/3 frames for Milwaukee, which has dropped seven straight and 11 of its past 12 tilts.
"I just wasn't finishing my pitches very well ... I just made too many mistakes," Nelson said.
The Cardinals staked Wainwright to an early healthy cushion after plating three runs in the first inning, two in the second, another in the third and two more in the fifth.
Carpenter singled to begin the game, Matt Holliday was hit by a pitch with one out and Carpenter scampered to third on a Matt Adams flyout before scoring on Peralta's base hit into right-center.
Oscar Tavares then reached base when Scooter Gennett bobbled his grounder to second, and Cruz followed with a single up the middle to bring home Holliday and Peralta.
Carpenter worked a two-out walk in the second before Wong clobbered a hanging changeup into the right-field seats. Cruz's two-out RBI double in the third gave the Cardinals a 6-0 advantage.
Run-scoring singles in the fifth by Jon Jay and Wainwright made it 8-0.
Milwaukee got on the board in the home fifth when Lyle Overbay ripped an RBI double to right, but the Cardinals got the run back in the top of the sixth on a Peralta sacrifice fly.
Carpenter looped an RBI single in the seventh before Khris Davis' run-scoring base hit in the home half cut the gap to 10-2.
The Brewers will be without shortstop Jean Segura until after the All-Star break following the death of his nine-month old son.