Originally written on Fox Sports  |  Last updated 8/20/12

St. Louis Cardinals manager Tony La Russa (R) congratulates starting pitcher Adam Wainwright after Wainwright finished the eighth inning, shutting out the Houston Astros at Busch Stadium in St. Louis on August 25, 2009. St. Louis won the game 1-0. UPI/Bill Greenblatt Photo via Newscom

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The St. Louis Cardinals' longest game in more than two years didn't go their way, but the team remains in the playoff hunt. The major league-worst Houston Astros aren't even close to contention, but interim manager Tony DeFrancesco still plans to treat the final stretch like a pennant chase. Cardinals right-hander Adam Wainwright will try to win his sixth straight start against the Astros on Tuesday night at Busch Stadium. With a chance to tie division rival Pittsburgh in the standings, St. Louis (65-56) fell 6-3 to the Pirates in 19 innings Sunday in a game that took 6 hours, 7 minutes. It was the Cardinals' longest game since going 20 innings against the New York Mets on April 17, 2010. "I don't know if it could be any more disappointing," manager Mike Matheny told the Cardinals' official website. Chasing down NL Central-leading Cincinnati might be a stretch, but St. Louis is still well within striking distance of a wild-card spot. "We've got to win every series. It doesn't ...
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