CHICAGO — Cardinals ace Adam Wainwright was back in charge Sunday.
Wainwright struck out 11 and allowed one run through seven innings, and Jon Jay drove in four runs with a homer and double to lead St. Louis to a 6-1 win over the Chicago Cubs.
Matt Carpenter singled in two runs in the third to help back Wainwright (14-7), who allowed just five hits and one walk after going 0-2 in his previous four starts.
“It’s as good as he’s been all season,” Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. “He came out in the first and established all his pitches, had great life.
“His curveball was as sharp as we’ve seen it. That made the difference, it set the tone.”
Wainwright hadn’t won since July 21 at home against San Diego and had allowed 14 runs in 28 innings during the span.
On Sunday, he faced only one batter over the minimum through the first five innings and only 26 through seven innings. He also beat the Cubs for the first time since April 13, 2012, a span of six starts.
“I just went out there in attack mode,” Wainwright said, “went out there with the right philosophy in understanding of who I was as a pitcher and just made pitches.
“I wanted to let everybody on the field know that I was in charge out there, so to speak. It’s a team over there that’s given me trouble over the last few years.”
St. Louis relievers Kevin Siegrist and Trevor Rosenthal combined to pitch a scoreless eighth and ninth.
One of Wainwright’s strikeouts led to Cubs manager Dale Sveum and reliever James Russell being ejected from the game in the bottom of the seventh.
St. Louis was already ahead 6-1 following Jay’s three-run homer off Russell in the top of the inning.
Wainwright allowed singles to Nate Schierholtz and Welington Castillo to open the bottom half, but the next batter, Donnie Murphy, was called out on a check swing.