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Jon Lester, St. Louis Cardinals hold down Cincinnati Reds

Aug 30, 2021; Cincinnati, Ohio, USA; St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Jon Lester (31) releases a pitch against the Cincinnati Reds during the first inning at Great American Ball Park. Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports
Aug 30, 2021; Cincinnati, Ohio, USA; St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Jon Lester (31) releases a pitch against the Cincinnati Reds during the first inning at Great American Ball Park. Mandatory Credit: David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

Jon Lester allowed one hit through 6 1/3 innings and Paul Goldschmidt belted a two-run homer to propel the visiting St. Louis Cardinals to a 3-1 victory over the Cincinnati Reds on Monday.

Tyler O’Neill added an RBI single to help the Cardinals earn their third win in the past four games. St. Louis moved within 2 1/2 games of Cincinnati for the second National League wild-card spot.

Lester (5-6) answered Kyle Farmer’s homer to lead off the second inning by handcuffing the Reds into the seventh. He allowed just that one run and two walks while striking out five to improve to 9-2 in his career versus Cincinnati.

Lester exited with a runner on first and one out. T.J. McFarland surrendered Farmer’s ground-rule double to put runners on second and third base, but the threat was quelled when Joey Votto was thrown out at home on a fielder’s choice.

McFarland and Luis Garcia bridged the gap to Giovanny Gallegos, who retired the side in the ninth in order for his third save of the season and the ninth of his career. Gallegos got the nod over Alex Reyes (29 saves), who has blown three of his past five save opportunities.

Farmer had both hits for the Reds, who have mustered just three runs during their three-game losing skid.

NL Player of the Week Tommy Edman worked a walk to start the game before Goldschmidt launched a 1-2 sinker from Luis Castillo (7-14) over the wall in right field. Goldschmidt’s homer was his 22nd of the season and fourth in his past eight games.

Farmer halved the deficit in the second inning by sending a 1-1 changeup from Lester over the wall in left field. Farmer’s homer was 12th of the season and first since Aug. 12.

St. Louis regained its two-run advantage in the sixth inning.

Dylan Carlson ripped a one-out double to right field and advanced to third on a groundout. Carlson came home after O’Neill slapped a slow dribbler toward third base.

–Field Level Media