St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Chris Carpenter throws during the third inning of an interleague baseball game against the Baltimore Orioles, Wednesday, June 29, 2011, in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Nick Wass) By Nick Wass
Baltimore Orioles relief pitcher Chris Jakubauskas throws against the St. Louis Cardinals during the third inning of an interleague baseball game, Wednesday, June 29, 2011, in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Nick Wass) By Nick Wass
St. Louis Cardinals center fielder Colby Rasmus bends to catch a fly ball by Baltimore Orioles' Blake Davis during the third inning of an interleague baseball game, Wednesday, June 29, 2011, in Baltimore. (AP Photo/Nick Wass) By Nick Wass
BALTIMORE (AP) -- Chris Carpenter scattered seven hits for his second complete game of the season and Colby Rasmus homered to help the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Baltimore Orioles 5-1 on Wednesday night.
Carpenter (3-7) threw a season-high 132 pitches to win his second straight start following a five-game losing streak. The right-hander struck out five, walked one and surrendered just one extra-base hit -- an RBI double to Nick Markakis in the third inning.
Carpenter's other complete game came on May 25, an eight-inning effort in a 3-1 loss at San Diego. The last time he went the distance and earned a victory was Sept. 30, 2010, against Colorado.
The 35-year-old has 31 complete games over 14 seasons.
Carpenter last faced the Orioles nine years earlier, when he was with the Toronto Blue Jays. He now has eight career wins over Baltimore, more than any other AL opponent.
Rasmus hit a two-run shot in the second inning to give St. Louis a 2-0 lead. It was his second homer of the series, third in five games and No. 8 on the year. He went 17 games without a home run before his recent run.
That was enough offense for the Cardinals, who will attempt to complete a three-game sweep on Thursday night.
Markakis went 2 for 4 to extend his hitting streak to a career-high 18 games. Over that time he has raised his batting average from .236 to .282.
Orioles starter Chris Jakubauskas (2-1) gave up five runs and seven hits in five innings.
It was the first time Jakubauskas faced Lance Berkman since the slugger hit a line drive off the pitcher's head in April 2010, when Jakubauskas was with Pittsburgh. The rematch was far less eventful: Berkman walked in the second inning ahead of Rasmus' homer, hit a sacrifice fly in the third and received an intentional walk in the fifth.
St. Louis made it 4-0 in the third. Nick Punto doubled and scored on a double by Skip Schumaker, who came home on a fly ball by Berkman.
Baltimore got a run in the bottom half when J.J. Hardy hit a two-out single off Carpenter's leg before Markakis doubled.
David Freese hit an RBI single in the fifth, and the Orioles loaded the bases with no outs in the bottom half but failed to score. After giving up three straight singles, Carpenter got Markakis to hit into a fielder's choice at the plate before retiring Adam Jones and Vladimir Guerrero on fly balls.
NOTES: The Cardinals gave struggling reliever Ryan Franklin his unconditional release. The former All-Star had an 8.46 ERA. ... Orioles LF Luke Scott did not play because he bruised his right knee making a leaping catch against the wall Tuesday night. Someone taped an outline of Scott on the wall before batting practice. ... LHP Jaime Garcia and RHP Jake Westbrook traded places in the Cardinals rotation. Garcia will pitch Thursday against the Orioles and Westbrook will go Friday at Tampa Bay. Manager Tony La Russa says he made the switch because "it sets us up better." ... Markakis is batting .415 during his streak, which includes 10 multihit games.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)