Originally posted on Fox Sports Midwest  |  Last updated 6/21/12
San-francisco-giants-louis
ST. LOUIS - Jake Westbrook's first complete game in more than two years Wednesday night did more than give the Cardinals a much needed win. It continued a trend of solid starting pitching that they hope is a sign of things to come. Westbrook allowed just one unearned run on five hits and a walk, working through the Detroit Tigers lineup with relative ease in a 3-1 Cardinals win. He retired 16 of the past 18 batters he faced and needed more than 13 pitches in an inning just three times, finishing with his 14th career complete game but first since May 16, 2010. "It was good to get out there and finish what I started," Westbrook told Jim Hayes of FOX Sports Midwest. "It's always good to do that. That's what I set out to every time out, its just a matter of keeping the pitch count down, making quick outs and having good innings and I was able to do that tonight. "That's kind of where I've been trying to get back to, getting down in the zone and getting balls hit on the ground an getting quick outs. The last two or three starts have been pretty good and now its just a matter of being consistent and keep it going." Consistent is exactly what the Cardinals starting staff has been the past two weeks. While the offense has been stuck in a rare slump that doesn't figure to last much longer, the starting staff has more than done their part. In 12 starts since June 7, Cardinals starters are 5-4 with a 2.56 ERA and have averaged more than 6 13 innings per start. Only once, Lance Lynn's five earned run outing on Tuesday, have they allowed more than three earned runs. The Cardinals burst out of the gates in April thanks in large part to a 2.61 ERA from their pitching staff, good for the second best ERA behind only the Washington Nationals. They were 20-11 on May 10 and held a nice lead in the National League Central. But the wheels have been falling off ever since, due in large part to a rough May on the mound. The Cardinals allowed more than two runs more per game in May, finishing among the worst in baseball with a 4.72 ERA during the month. It's been a little better overall in June at 4.27, but that number has come way down the past two weeks because of the resurgence of their starting staff. With Chris Carpenter and Jaime Garcia on the disabled list, the starting staff has had to pick up the slack. And of late, they've done just that. Kyle Lohse has a 1.74 ERA in his past three starts, allowing just four earned runs in 20 23 innings. And the right-hander, who has allowed just 15 hits during the span, will look to help the Cardinals win the series when he starts Thursday afternoon in Detroit. Westbrook has a 2.57 ERA in his past three starts, giving up three earned runs in six innings in each of his past two starts prior to Wednesday's gem. He had given up at least five earned runs in each of his three previous starts. After allowing seven earned runs on June 1 in New York, Adam Wainwright has been much better in his past three starts as well. Wainwright, pitching his first season since missing all of 2011 with Tommy John surgery, has allowed six earned runs in 19 23 innings over his past three outings, good for a 2.75 ERA. Lynn suffered a hiccup on Tuesday night when he allowed five earned runs in just five innings of work. He's got a 3.30 ERA in his past five starts, allowing two earned runs or less in each of his previous four starts prior to Tuesday. Rookie Joe Kelly has been strong replacement for the injured Jaime Garcia. In his two starts since being promoted from Triple-A, Kelly has allowed just three earned runs in 9 13 innings, good for a 2.89 ERA. The Cardinals enter Thursday's series finale trailing the Cincinnati Reds by 3.5 games in the National League Central. After getting off to a fast start, the Cardinals are just 15-23 since May 10. But their struggles the past two weeks haven't been because of the starting pitching. And if the starters continue on their current roll, the Cardinals figure to start winning a lot more games.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Top 10 takeaways from Super Bowl 50

Was firing Jeff Hornacek the wrong move for the Suns?

Panthers picked wrong day to play worst game of the season

Was Peyton Manning paid for Budweiser mentions?

Cam Newton walks out of postgame press conference

Eli did not look thrilled after Peyton locked up Super Bowl

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

Rick Reilly sends awkward tweet during Super Bowl 50

Peyton Manning gives Papa John a kiss after game

Panthers' Josh Norman crying after losing Super Bowl

Peyton Manning ‘going to drink a lot of Budweiser’ after win

Where Peyton Manning ranks among Super Bowl era QBs

Peyton Manning declines to comment on possible retirement

Von Miller trolls Cam Newton, Panthers

Cam Newton proves again he is a great winner and terrible loser

Steph Curry trolls himself with Jordan face meme

Winners and losers from Super Bowl 50

The best and worst commercials from Super Bowl 50

Aqib Talib wipes out on NFL Network

Six best plays from Super Bowl 50

Five biggest boneheaded plays of Super Bowl 50

WATCH: Cam Newton gives questionable effort to recover fumble

Lions say Calvin Johnson's future still not determined

How Louisville basketball bungled their self-imposed ban

Ted Ginn Jr. whiffs on football twice on one play, results in Panthers turnover

Kony Ealy makes one-handed interception of Peyton Manning

MLB News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

The best and worst commercials from Super Bowl 50

Best and worst from Super Bowl 50

Six best plays from Super Bowl 50

Eli doesn't look thrilled as Peyton wins Super Bowl

Did Beyonce almost fall down during Super Bowl halftime show?

Curry to serve as drummer for Panthers

Report: Marshawn Lynch plans to retire

The 14 biggest plays in Super Bowl history

Five outrageous predictions for Super Bowl 50

QUIZ: Name the winning starting quarterback from every Super Bowl

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker