(BaseballStL) — After pecking at each other for five innings, the Cubs took a lead over the Cardinals on a two-run homer from Junior Lake.
Michael Wacha had dodged trouble most of the day, scattering three hits and three walks to leave six Chicago runners on base.
In the fifth, the Cubs loaded the bases on a leadoff double and two walks. Wacha fell behind Anthony Rizzo 2-0 before Matt Adams ended the inning with a stellar play on a hard shot to first.
The Cardinals had four hits going into the sixth, three of which belonged to Adams. They matched Chicago early, leaving six runners stranded and going 0-for-4 through five innings with runners in scoring position.
Starlin Castro led of the sixth inning with single to center field, then Wacha got a pop out and a strike out to bring Lake to the dish.
With his third hit of the day, he gave the Cubs a 2-0 lead when he took a ball into the left center stands.
Anthony Rizzo would homer off Randy Choate in the eighth to give the Cubs another run, and notch the first homer off Choate since the 38-year-old joined the Cardinals.
It would be enough to best the Birds, as the Cardinals managed to get two men on in the ninth, but Jon Jay grounded into a double play before Mark Ellis struck out to end the game.
As a team, St. Louis managed only seven hits on the day.