ST. LOUIS -- An offensive explosion made Justin Masterson a winner in his first start with his new club, as the Cardinals smacked around Kyle Lohse to even this weekend series against the division leading Brewers, 9-7.
With the win, the Cardinals improved to two games back of Milwaukee. The second-place Pirates were tied with the Diamondbacks at time of publish.
Masterson wasn't great, but hung around long enough to earn a win, despite a steady Brewers comeback attempt.
The righty allowed five runs on seven hits in six innings. He allowed single runs in the first and sixth and three in the fourth when a walk and a botched double play ball prolonged the frame.
By that point, the Cardinals had spotted him a healthy lead.
The Cardinals erupted for six runs in the first two innings and nine total off Lohse, who was mercifully pulled in the fourth.
Kolten Wong and Jhonny Peralta homered. Wong also doubled, singled and drove in three. As the game went on the Cardinals continued to pile and pile on insurance. They would need all of it, the most important two runs coming from a fifth inning double from Oscar Taveras.
Taveras has now hit safely in three straight games since being given the right field job with the departure of Allen Craig.
Lohse tied a career high with nine runs allowed.
Trevor Rosenthal allowed a double in the ninth and the tying run to bat, but struck out two to earn his 33rd save.
Masterson also singled and executed a sacrifice bunt in his debut at the plate. On the mound, he was precisely as advertised. Twelve of his outs came via ground ball, but three walks hurt him early.
The Cardinals, though, didn't have much trouble elevating against fellow sinker-baller Lohse.
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