- Associated Press - Sunday, June 15, 2014

ST. LOUIS — A five-game winning streak for Washington pitcher Doug Fister is over.

The St. Louis Cardinals beat Fister and the Nationals 5-2 on Sunday to sweep a three-game series.

Fister (5-2) pitched six innings, allowing seven hits and four runs. He took the blame for the loss.

“I didn’t do my job today,” Fister said. “It basically comes down to poor execution. I’ve got to a lot better when it comes to critical pitches. That’s what it comes down to.

Matt Adams homered for the third straight game — all with his father in attendance — and Matt Holliday also went deep off Fister.

Adams gave St. Louis a 2-0 lead in the second inning with a two-run shot on an 0-2 pitch, his sixth homer of the season. Adams‘ father, Jamie, has been visiting from Pennsylvania on Father’s Day weekend.

Adams has homered in all three games since coming off the disabled list with a torn calf muscle.

Holliday put St. Louis up 3-0 in the third.

“The home runs were the two biggest things for me,” Fister said. “I need to find a better effort.”

While Fister had Adams down in the count, he couldn’t put him away.

“I was trying to get him to swing at it and get a ground ball,” Fister said. “I got too much of the plate and that’s what he does and does well. He made me pay for it.”

Adams maintained he was just protecting the plate.

“I knew the guy could throw it anywhere in the zone and I was just ready to get the barrel on the ball,” Adams said.

The Nationals loaded the bases in three innings, stranded 10 runners and scored on two bases loaded walks.

“It’s the ebbs and flows of the game,” Washington manager Matt Williams said. “It’s that time of the year where heavy legs start to set in a little bit. We had the bases loaded three times and just didn’t get it done today.

“We’ll regroup and get ready to go. The off day will come at a good time.”

Jaime Garcia (3-0) pitched seven innings, allowing five hits and a run for St. Louis. He struck out six and walked two. Trevor Rosenthal got the final out for his 20th save.

St. Louis has won 12 of the last 14 regular-season meetings with Washington. The Nationals are 2-18 in the newest version of Busch Stadium.

Garcia pitched out of a one-out, bases-loaded jam in the second. Third baseman Matt Carpenter caught Sandy Leon’s grounder on a short hop and threw out Scott Hairston at home. Garcia then struck out Fister.

Jayson Werth drew a bases loaded walk in the fifth to cut the lead to 3-1 before Garcia escaped with a groundout.

“I think we didn’t take advantage of our opportunities,” Hairston said. “I don’t know how many runners we left on base, quite a few I know, and that can’t happen. Their pitcher was good.”

Cardinals manager Mike Matheny agreed.

“Jaime has been around for a little while,” Matheny said. “He did a good job of getting out of those innings.”

St. Louis got the run back in the fifth, when Kolton Wong snapped an 0-for-16 skid with a leadoff triple and scored on a sacrifice fly by Holliday, who has 999 RBIs in his career.

Craig doubled home Holliday in the seventh for a 5-1 lead.

Rosenthal walked pinch-hitter Adam LaRoche in the ninth with the bases loaded to make it 5-2.

NOTES: Reliever Carlos Martinez will make his second career start Monday when the Cardinals host the New York Mets. Martinez is taking the start in place of Adam Wainwright (elbow). … Before Sunday’s game, the Cardinals purchased the contract of left-handed pitcher Nick Greenwood from Triple-A Memphis and optioned outfielder Randal Grichuk back to the affiliate. … After starting 1,114 MLB games at third base, and 12 in left field, Ryan Zimmerman started Sunday at first base for the Nationals. … Washington’s Danny Espinosa was hit by a pitch in the second inning, the eighth time this season. … Washington CF Denard Span was scratched from the lineup due to back stiffness and replaced by Nate McLouth. … St. Louis native boxer Devon Alexander threw out the first pitch. Alexander (25-2 with 14 knockouts) is a former WBC and IBF light welterweight champion and a former IBF welterweight champion. He has a welterweight fight against Robert Guerrero (31-2-1) on June 21. … Randy Choate’s one-pitch win in Saturday’s game made him the sixth pitcher in Cardinals history to throw one pitch and record a victory.

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