The St. Louis Cardinals played host to their bitter division rivals, the Cincinnati Reds, to open a pivotal three-game series. The Cardinals currently sit atop the N.L. Central, while the Reds are just a game back in the division. Both teams are favorites to win division and every match up is intense.
The Cardinals sent their ace Adam Wainwright to the mound. He has been phenomenal all season, boasting a 4-1 record with an ERA under 2.0 and a WHIP under 1.0. Wainwright was equally impressive tonight, throwing seven strong innings, while only allowing two earned runs over five hits. If the Cardinals offense did not have such a terrible night at the plate, Wainwright would have pitched deeper into the ball game instead of being pinch hit in the top of the eighth inning.
As good as Wainwright was tonight, Mat Latos was as good, if not better. He threw one less inning than his counterpart, tossing only six innings, but allowed no runs on five hits from St. Louis. Latos is no stranger to low scoring contests as he has seen little in run support from his offense this season. On average, the Reds generate less then two runs an outing for Latos. He has recorded a quality start in all five previous starts this season, and only has one win to show for it.
Latos’ six shutout innings proved to be enough to beat Wainwright and the Cardinals, as the Reds held onto a 2-1 lead; Latos earning his second victory of the season. It was a win well deserved by Latos, beating a very good pitcher and a very good team, in a very big game. If Cincinnati continues to see these results from Latos, they are the clear cut favorite to come out of the Central Division of the National League once again.