Wainwright allowed one hit, facing one batter over the minimum and very few hard-hit balls, and the St. Louis Cardinals ended an eight-game home run drought with long balls from Matt Adams and Jhonny Peralta in a 5-0 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks on Tuesday night.
Working on six days rest because of a rainout and day off, Wainwright (7-2) retired the first 11 batters before Paul Goldschmidt doubled off the wall in center with two outs in the fourth. He matched his season best with nine strikeouts, fanning A.J. Pollock twice.
“Just take what you get.”
Peralta hit his team-leading ninth of the season in the sixth and added one of the Cardinals‘ five doubles for a second RBI against Bronson Arroyo (4-3). Arroyo had been 3-0 with an 0.39 ERA in May and hadn’t allowed a homer his last four starts. Arroyo gave up five runs in seven innings, all of the runs coming with two outs.
“With two outs, they were tough. They just got it done,” Arroyo said. “You just can’t do that with Wainwright, he’s so tough.”
Adams’ two-run shot in the first was the Cardinals‘ first since May 9 when Peralta and Craig homered at Pittsburgh. It was their first in nine home games since Adams and Craig connected against the Brewers on April 30.
The Cardinals entered with 23 homers, fewest in the National League and second fewest in the majors.
“We didn’t stress the first couple of months of the season the way our offense was,” Adams said. “We know this is the offense we’re capable of every night.”
The one-hitter was a career best for Wainwright, who has thrown four two-hitters. He threw his second shutout of the season and the eighth of his career on a day Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said struggling closer Trevor Rosenthal would not be available. Rosenthal has two blown saves his last five appearances, the last coming when he pitched for the fourth straight game and took the loss against the Braves on Sunday.
Former closer Jason Motte, activated from the 15-day disabled list before the game, warmed up in the ninth. Matheny said Motte would have made his season debut if Wainwright, who totaled 115 pitches with no walks, struggled.
Wainwright said he lobbied Matheny for 12 pitches in the ninth and needed just nine to finish it.
“We’ve taken a couple from him when he was right there,” Matheny said. “You don’t often get those opportunities with a one-hit shutout, and he hadn’t worked that hard.”