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Cardinals 4, Cubs 0

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CHICAGO -- Yadier Molina went 2-for-4 with two-run home run, and Joe Kelly scattered four hits over six scoreless innings as the St. Louis Cardinals blanked the Chicago Cubs, 4-0, on Saturday.

Molina's shot to left-center in the sixth, his first since returning last Thursday from the 15-day disabled list, scored Matt Holliday for a 4-0 Cardinals lead.

Kelly (4-3) is 4-0 since July 12, while St. Louis evened the weekend series at a game apiece in front of an announced crowd of 41,981 at Wrigley Field.

Chicago left-hander Travis Wood (7-10) suffered his third loss in his last four decisions.

The Cubs had a promising start with bases loaded in the third and only one out. But Kelly struck out Anthony Rizzo and Nate Schierholtz grounded to second.

The Cardinals broke the shutout in the fourth when Matt Carpenter led off with a double and Carlos Beltran brought him home with a first pitch double hit for a 1-0 lead.

St. Louis added a run after loading the bases in the fifth. Jon Jay doubled with one out, Pete Kozma walked, Kelly was hit by a pitch and Carpenter popped to short left for the second out.

But an inattentive shortstop Starlin Castro didn't immediately return the ball to the infield and Jay bolted for home, beating a late throw after Castro belatedly realized what was happening.

Cubs manager Dale Sveum pulled Castro after the mental lapse. Third baseman Donnie Murphy moved to shortstop and Cody Ransom came in to play third.

Molina's sixth inning home run was his ninth of the season and first since July 26. He went on the 15-day disabled list on July 30 because of a right knee sprain.

St. Louis had Molina on third and Jay on first with one out in the ninth. Molina doubled to open the inning, reached third on a wild pitch but was tagged at the plate on a fielder's choice.

Kelly departed after six full innings after allowing four hits, striking out three and walking six. Right-hander Seth Maness entered in relief and worked a scoreless seventh.

Michael Wacha, the fourth Cardinal pitcher of the day, struck out the side in the ninth.

Wood (7-10) allowed four earned runs on four hits. He struck out three and walked one.

The Cardinals send right-hander Adam Wainwright (13-7, 2.71 earned-run average) against Cubs righty Edwin Jackson (7-12, 5.05) in Sunday's series wrap-up.

NOTES: The Cardinals recalled left-hander Ted Lyons from Triple-A Memphis and optioned left-hander Sam Freeman. Lyon is 7-2 with a 4.39 ERA in Memphis and 2-4 with a 5.35 ERA in seven starts with St. Louis. ... Sunday starter Adam Wainwright has never lost at Wrigley Field in 10 starts. He's 5-0 with a 3.97 ERA in 15 games. Overall, he's 6-6 in 29 games against the Cubs. ... Yadier Molina, recently reactivated from the disabled list, was a .429 hitter this season against the Cubs this season entering Saturday, but only .229 in 57 games Wrigley Field. ... After a run of four shutout losses in seven games, the Cubs finally turned the tables by blanking an opponent. Friday's 7-0 victory over St. Louis was Chicago's fifth shutout of the season and third against the Cardinals. ... The Cubs are 34-33 outside their division, but only 19-36 against NL Central teams. ... Travis Wood remains only one of three pitchers in the majors with an ERA below 3.00, but with at least nine losses. He's joined by Chris Sale (8-11, 2.74) of the White Sox and Stephen Strasburg (6-9, 2.83) of Washington.
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