MILWAUKEE -- The Cardinals had 12 hits -- all of them singles -- and Jake Westbrook allowed just one run over six innings in St. Louis' 6-5 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers on Thursday at Miller Park.
Westbrook (2-1) scattered six hits and three walks while striking out four. He saw his ERA rise from 0.98 to 1.07, best in the National League. In five starts this season, he's allowed just four runs.
The victory Thursday gives him a 100-96 career record in 13 major league seasons.
Wily Peralta, a rookie facing St. Louis for the first time, threw 50 of his 80 pitches for strikes. but Cardinals batters often got just enough of his offerings to cause trouble. He gave up six runs on 11 hits in 4 2/3 innings.
St. Louis batted around against Peralta (2-2) in the third, scoring six runs on seven singles -- an assortment of bloopers, broken-bats and dribbles.
Westbrook and Matt Carpenter hit one-out singles, and Peralta plunked Matt Holliday to load the bases with two outs.
Allen Craig drove in the first two runs on a single to left, and Yadier Molina made it 3-0 with a base hit to right. Craig scored on David Freese's RBI single, and Jon Jay loaded the bases again with a hit to left.
That brought Pete Kozma up for a second time, and he drove in two with a single to left, taking second when Ryan Braun tried to catch Freese at the plate. When all was said and done, St. Louis had a 6-0 lead.
Milwaukee got one back in the fourth on three straight singles with one out. Westbrook caught Alex Gonzalez looking at strike three, and Peralta struck out swinging, leaving runners at the corners.
With Westbrook done, the Brewers scored twice in the seventh and once in the eighth, but they stranded runners in scoring position in both innings. Milwaukee cut it to 6-5 in the ninth on Gonzalez's RBI single, but Edward Mujica struck out pinch hitter Jonathan Lucroy to earn his seventh save.
NOTES: Milwaukee activated INF Jeff Bianchi from the disabled list before the game, filling a roster vacancy created when OF Khris Davis was optioned to Triple-A Nashville on Wednesday. Bianchi missed the season's first month due to a sore left hip flexor. ... Freese was back in the Cardinals' starting lineup after getting the previous two games off. ... Milwaukee CF Carlos Gomez began the night with an eight-game hitting streak, and he was hitting .509 (27-for-53) with five home runs and eight RBIs in his previous 16 games.