St. Louis Cardinals' Randal Grichuk (15) hits a walk-off home run in the ninth inning of a baseball game against the Chicago Cubs on Monday, May 23, 2016, in St. Louis. The Cardinals defeated the Cubs 4-3. (AP Photo/Michael Thomas)
Michael Thomas
May 24, 2016

ST. LOUIS (AP) Another dominant outing for Chicago Cubs starter John Lackey against his former team was spoiled by one swing of the bat.

Matt Adams' pinch-hit, two-run homer off Lackey in the seventh tied the game and Randal Grichuk's first career walk-off homer against reliever Adam Warren (3-1) in the ninth handed the Cubs a 4-3 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals 4-3 on Monday night.

Lackey, who signed with the Cubs as a free agent from St. Louis, had once again silenced the Cardinals' bats through the first six innings. Previously, Lackey shut out the Cardinals on April 18. Adams' homer ended a streak of 13 innings of one-run pitching by Lackey against St. Louis.

''When you're playing tight and close games, low scoring games like that, one pitch can be the difference and it was tonight for sure,'' Lackey said.

Lackey gave up three runs in seven economical innings. He struck out nine while throwing just 87 pitches.

''He left the one up to Adams and he didn't miss it,'' Cubs manager Joe Maddon said. ''Give him credit, the man comes off the bench. . but Johnny again, we played well we pitched well. We made two mistakes and paid for it.''

The Cardinals knew Lackey would bring his best.

''That's what he does, he competes and when he competes and has his good stuff, its' going to be tough getting something going,'' Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said.

The Cubs' Ben Zobrist had three singles and a walk, extending his streak to 29 starts with reaching safely. He is hitting .387 during that span.

''They had some key hits right there at the right time and otherwise that was a really quality start, a quality game by our team,'' Zobrist said.

Miguel Montero's second single of the game tied it at 1-1 in the fourth, breaking a 26-inning scoreless streak Cardinals starter Adam Wainwright had against the Cubs dating back to May 13, 2014.

Javier Baez followed with a bunt, but was awarded an infield single after Cardinals second baseman Kolten Wong failed to backup first on the play, setting up a fielder's choice from Addison Russell that made it 2-1 Cubs.

Anthony Rizzo drove in his 35th run of the year with a broken-bat single in the fifth.

Trevor Rosenthal (2-1) pitched a scoreless ninth.

Wainwright pitched in and out of trouble throughout his six innings, scattering seven hits and stranding eight runners, while throwing 68 of his 108 pitches for strikes.

Aledmys Diaz gave the Cardinals' an early lead with a sacrifice fly in the third.

The Cubs still own the best record in the majors at 29-14, but have lost eight of their last 12 games.

''We knew there was going to be lows and we got hot at the beginning and now we've gotten cold the last couple of weeks,'' Zobrist said. ''So we got to find the middle ground and get back to playing good baseball.''


The Cubs released OF Shane Victorino from his minor league contract. Victorino won World Series titles with Philadelphia and Boston and played earlier this month for Triple-A Iowa.


Cubs: OF Jason Heyward (contusion) took swings in the batting cage and did other exercises. He was out of the lineup for s second straight game and is day-to-day.

''If it was up to me I'd be playing right now, but obviously you have to go through stuff and test it out,'' Heyward said. ''We'll see what they say and we'll see how it feels after a couple of days.''

Cardinals: SS Jhonny Peralta (thumb) went back to Single A-Peoria after being examined by the team Sunday. Peralta, who Matheny said was progressing, was placed on a 20-day rehabilitation assignment on May 20.


Cubs: RHP Jason Hammel (5-1, 2.31 ERA) will make his second start of the season against St. Louis. He earned the win, allowing one run in six innings on April 19 and is 3-3 with a 5.26 ERA in eight career starts against the Cardinals.

Cardinals: RHP Michael Wacha (2-4, 4.03 ERA) is trying to break a career-long four-game losing streak. He is 3-3 with a 4.86 ERA in 10 career appearances against Chicago.

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