St. Louis is off to a fast start after getting swept by Boston in the World Series last year.
The Cardinals have the NL’s best record, and their lead in the NL Central is up to a season-high five games.
A day after they pulled off the biggest ninth-inning comeback in team history, scoring seven runs in a 10-9 win, the Cardinals relied on a few well-placed hits and impeccable pitching to win another.
Jason Marquis gave up three hits and pitched into the ninth inning Tuesday as St. Louis came away with a 4-2 victory.
“We’ve got some superstars and some guys who know how to play the game the right way,” Marquis said.
Mulder is the Cardinals’ newest superstar and so far he has been as good as advertised. Acquired in a trade with Oakland over the winter, the veteran left-hander is 3-1 with a 3.50 ERA in five starts.
However, Mulder is coming off a subpar outing.
Mulder barely outpitched former Oakland teammate Tim Hudson, but earned a 6-5 win over Atlanta on Friday. The 6-foot-6 southpaw wasn’t at his best, allowing five runs and eight hits in seven innings.
“I would make two or three bad pitches in a row, then I’d make a great pitch and get a double play,” Mulder said. “I was leaving everything up, especially in the first inning.”
While Mulder and the Cardinals are on a roll, the Reds can’t seem to catch a break. Cincinnati has dropped a season-high six straight and is already 7 1/2 games behind St. Louis.
“It’s all too familiar,” said reliever Joe Valentine, who gave up a pair of runs in the eighth on Tuesday. “The last week has been the roughest part of my career, and to go along with the roughest part of our season as a team.”
The Reds managed just four hits on Tuesday, with the bottom five batters in the lineup combining to go 0-for-15.