Michael Wacha threw a three-hitter for his first career shutout, helping the St. Louis Cardinals beat the New York Mets 5-0 on Tuesday night.
Despite a slow start that has them one game under .500, the Cardinals were able to move within 3 1/2 games behind the National League Central Division-leading Milwaukee Brewers thanks to Wacha, who won his fourth consecutive start, and Matt Carpenter, who had four hits.
Wacha struck out eight and walked one in his 99th start, allowing only three runners to reach second base.
Wacha and the Cardinals capitalized on a shoddy Mets defense that let down starter Rafael Montero (1-6) with three errors. Montero allowed four runs, two earned, in six innings. New York has lost three straight and eight of 11.
Mets right-hander Jacob deGrom (10-3, 3.48) starts Wednesday night against Cardinals RHP Mike Leake (7-6, 3.14 ERA). DeGrom has won a career-best six straight starts with a 1.53 ERA dating to June 12. He's struck out 47 and walked nine during that stretch.