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Cardinals vs. Diamondbacks: Chris Carpenter Gets The Rubber Match

(Sports Network) - Staff ace Chris Carpenter pitches for the series win today when the St. Louis Cardinals visit Chase Field for the finale of a three-game National League weekend set with the host Arizona Diamondbacks.

Arizona won, 7-2, on Saturday and - coupled with Cincinnati's 11-5 defeat of Kansas City - dropped the Cardinals 1 1/2 games behind the Reds atop the NL's Central Division.

Mark Reynolds finished a triple shy of the cycle and Dan Haren tossed eight solid innings for the Diamondbacks.

Reynolds went 3-for-4 with a solo homer and two RBI as the hosts bounced back from a 5-2 defeat in the series opener Friday. Adam LaRoche hit a pair of solo homers for Arizona, which also got a solo shot from Chris Snyder.

Haren (7-4), who played for St. Louis in 2003-04, gave up two runs on six hits to win his second consecutive start. He also fanned nine batters and walked zero.

Colby Rasmus hit a solo homer for the Cardinals, who have dropped five of six. Ryan Ludwick drove in the other run in defeat.

Adam Ottavino (0-2), making his third major league start, allowed six runs on nine hits over just 3 2/3 innings to take the loss.

Carpenter, the NL's Cy Young Award winner in 2005, is unbeaten in nine career appearances against the Diamondbacks and hasn't lost in 2010 since a 4-1 decision against Houston on May 13.

In five starts since, he's 3-0 while allowing 34 hits and nine runs in 35 2/3 innings.

In an April 21 start at Arizona, Carpenter got a no-decision in the Cardinals' 9-4 win, after allowing six hits and three runs - while striking out a season- high 10 - in seven innings.

He's 4-0 with a 2.09 earned run average in 47 1/3 career innings against Arizona and 2-0 in six road starts this season.

For the Diamondbacks, righty Edwin Jackson returns against the Cardinals for the first time since going eight innings in the aforementioned April 21 matchup.

The 26-year-old allowed seven hits and four runs over eight innings in that game, walking none and striking out four.

Jackson, who is winless in four lifetime games against St. Louis, is 0-1 with a pair of no-decisions since last winning on May 22 against Toronto.

He's actually dropped his ERA from 6.28 to 5.38 in those outings, allowing just seven runs on 16 hits in 22 innings.

He's 2-3 with a 5.51 ERA in seven home starts.

St. Louis took two of three from the D-Backs earlier in the year after winning the series 4-2 a year ago.