Cards pip Nats to sweep 3-game series; Matsuzaka lifts Mets over Reds


AP

ST. LOUIS — Rookie Shelby Miller won his 15th game and Yadier Molina had the go-ahead hit for St. Louis, which wrapped up a three-game sweep of Washington and moved another step closer to the NL Central title with a 4-1 victory Wednesday.

Jordan Zimmermann (19-9) missed his only shot at 20 wins, allowing four runs in seven innings. The Nationals had five hits one day after breaking up rookie Michael Wacha’s bid for a no-hitter with two outs in the ninth inning.

Matt Adams hit his eighth home run since replacing injured Allen Craig and doubled for the Cardinals (94-65), who are a season-high 29 games above .500.

Miller (15-9) walked two of the first three hitters to set up Bryce Harper’s RBI single. Miller allowed a run in six-plus innings.

Rookie Trevor Rosenthal saved all three games.

Zimmermann had won his previous four appearances and had been coming off a two-hit shutout of Miami. But he is 0-3 with a 8.27 ERA in six career starts against St. Louis, and lost Game 2 of the NL division series last fall.

Mets 1, Reds 0 Daisuke Matsuzaka scattered four hits in 7 2/3 innings to win his third consecutive start, outdueling Cincinnati’s Mat Latos.

Eric Young Jr. drove in the only run for the Mets, who won two of three in the series to further dampen Cincinnati’s hopes of hosting the NL wild-card playoff game on Tuesday.

Matsuzaka (3-3) allowed two walks and hit a batter. He struck out six and evened his record after three losses and a no-decision in his first four starts after joining the Mets in August.

He left the game with a runner on second and two outs in the eighth. Pedro Feliciano came on to walk Shin-Soo Choo before getting Joey Votto to fly out to center for the fourth time in four at-bats.

LaTroy Hawkins pitched the ninth for his 13th save.

The shutout loss was Cincinnati’s 11th of the season, after only four last year.