Cards light up Billingsley in 6th as Wainwright silences Dodgers

ST. LOUIS -- Adam Wainwright and Chad Billingsley matched zeroes for five innings. Wainwright kept going long after the St. Louis Cardinals roughed up the 10-game winner.

Wainwright scattered eight hits in eight innings and the Cardinals scored six runs in the sixth inning of a 10-0 victory Tuesday night that saddled the Dodgers with their first three-game losing streak of the season.

"My main focus was just to keep going and outlast him," Wainwright said. "Our offense, we're kind of like the Rams when they won the Super Bowl, that quick strike offense.

"Even though he was pitching a great game, I knew our offense would get to him," he said.

The Dodgers have the majors' best record at 62-38 and were the last team to lose three in a row, going a franchise-record 99 games before falling in their 100th game. That shattered the previous mark of 73 games in June 1965.

"We've won a lot of close games, but to go this long only losing two in a row is pretty unusual," manager Joe Torre said. "But we have to get ourselves righted right now."

Billingsley (10-6) had a one-hitter through five innings before falling apart in a game that was delayed 1 hour, 25 minutes at the start due to the threat of heavy rain that never came. The Dodgers have managed one run on 20 hits the first two games of a four-game series and are 2-10 at 4-year-old Busch Stadium.

"Everything was going well," Billingsley said. "Just that sixth inning, I couldn't stop the bleeding."

Ryan Ludwick's bases-loaded single keyed the sixth-inning outburst and Mark DeRosa added a three-run homer in the eighth, his sixth in 14 games. The Cardinals' revamped lineup has scored 16 runs the last two games without a contribution from Albert Pujols.

Pujols is 1-for-7 with three walks in the series and 10-for-42 (.238) since the All-Star break with two homers and two RBIs -- both in the first game back -- and no other extra-base hits.

The three-game losing streak is Los Angeles' longest since they dropped eight in a row Aug. 22-29, 2008, and they were shut out for the sixth time. Infielder Mark Loretta made his second career relief appearance, hitting Matt Holliday with a pitch before getting the last out of the eighth on Ludwick's flyout to the warning track in left.

Wainwright (12-6) scattered eight hits with five strikeouts and one walk, and hit his stride after stranding two runners in the second, third and sixth. He worked six or more innings for the 20th consecutive start and seven or more for the eighth time in nine outings, and retired the last eight hitters in order.

Wainwright was 3-1 with a 1.16 ERA in July and the latest victory exceeded his 2008 total, when he was sidelined for 65 games with a finger tendon injury.

Ludwick, who had been the cleanup hitter before the Cardinals acquired Holliday last week, is 7-for-12 with 17 RBIs with the bases loaded after grounding a solid single up the middle on a 1-1 pitch.

"I don't know if it was the key blow but it was a big hit," Ludwick said. "I'm just trying to do my job."

The Cardinals didn't get a hit until Holliday's single to left with two outs in the fourth and Billingsley (10-6) needed only 59 pitches to work five innings, before running into big trouble. Billingsley needed 35 pitches to get two more outs in the sixth, giving up three hits, walking four and throwing two wild pitches.

Skip Schumaker walked to start the inning and capped the rally with an RBI single that extended his hitting streak to 11 games. Billingsley walked three others, including Holliday intentionally to load the bases before Ludwick's single for the game's first runs.

Yadier Molina had a two-run single with two outs and Wainwright had an RBI single after Brendan Ryan was walked intentionally.

Game notes
Dodgers RHP Jason Schmidt (1-1, 7.88 ERA) threw a bullpen session Tuesday, but manager Joe Torre hasn't yet decided whether he'd stay in the rotation. ... Andre Ethier doubled in the third and is batting .500 (17-for-34) during a nine-game hitting streak. ... Holliday was 1-for-3 after becoming the first Cardinal to double in his first four games, in statistics dating to 1954.