One day after the St. Louis Cardinals hitters lit up Randy Wells for six hits and five runs through six batters, Lou Pinella needed a big start from his rotation. That he got on Saturday afternoon from Carlos Silva. Silva, in his first year in Chicago, after being traded for Milton Bradley won his 7thstart of the season. Silva has yet to lose as a Chicago Cub.
Silva struck out 11 Cardinal batters, including 7 in the first three innings. The right hander finished the game with 100 pitches, going 7 innings, and allowing just 2 hits. Sean Marshall, Carlos Zambrano and Jeff Stevens finished the last two innings for Chicago.
The Cubs used a three run fourth inning to take the lead and keep it. Marlon Byrd knocked in Alfonso Soriano, who had just stole second base to put the Cubs on the scoreboard. Mike Fontenot tripled home Byrd, followed by a Starlin Castro single to make the game 3-0 after 4. Kosuke Fukudome walked to score the fourth run in the 6th inning, then hit a sac fly in the 8th to make the score 5-0.
Rookie Adam Ottavino took the loss for the Cardinals. This was Ottavino’s first career major league start after starting several games for AAA-Memphis. He finished the game with 5 hits and 4 runs through 5.2 innings. His biggest problem was the six walks, as he finished with 99 pitches. Ottavino took the rotation spot of Kyle Lohse, who will miss significant time. Mitchell Boggs and Blake Hawksworth finished the game for the Cardinals. Matt Holliday finished the game with the only two hits off Silva, a single and a double. Yadier Molina and Brendan Ryan both singled in the 8th inning for a minor rally, which was killed by Nick Stavinoha’s double play. Albert Pujols went 0-3 with a strikeout to dip his season average to .299.
The win for the Cubs moved them to 24-26 overall and 14-12 at home. Chicago is 6.5 games behind Cincinnati, in third place in the NL Central. The Cardinals dropped to 28-22 overall and 13-14 on the road. St. Louis fell to a season high two games behind Cincinnati for first place in the division.