Jarrod Parker was on the verge of recording his 10th straight quality start, shutting out the Cardinals through three innings.
Unfortunately, a sudden injury ended his outing, when he collapsed after throwing a pitch with two out in the fourth inning. Parker was attended to by the A’s trainers as he lay in front of the mound, and left the game with tightness in his right hamstring.
With Parker out, Bob Melvin handed the ball to Jesse Chavez, asking him to replicate his extraordinary performance in extra-innings against the Yankees a few weeks ago.
But Chavez pitched nothing like it. He walked Matt Adams and hit David Freese to begin the fifth. Both of them would eventually come around to score, and the Cardinals led 2-0.
The trouble continued in the sixth. After allowing back-to-back singles, Chavez gave up an RBI single to Matt Holliday, much to the chagrin of the sellout crowd who booed the former Athletics’ outfielder during every at-bat.
Having seen enough, Melvin turned to lefty Jerry Blevins, but he probably wished he hadn’t. Blevins allowed a three-run homer to Matt Adams, a ball that barely cleared the fence in right field.
With a big cushion, it was smooth sailing for Cardinals ace Adam Wainwright, who was sensational once again.
He went the distance, striking out eight, allowing just one run on five hits and one walk. He snapped his two-game losing streak with a dominant performance.
Wainwright’s only blemish came on Josh Reddick’s eighth-inning RBI single.
The A’s will look to put this game aside and go for the series win tomorrow afternoon, as Tommy Milone takes the mound against Jake Westbrook.