ST. LOUIS Paul DeJong homered and St. Louis tied its season high with four stolen bases in a 3-1 win over the Cincinnati Reds on Thursday to complete a successful homestand that cut the Cardinals' NL Central deficit.
DeJong hit a tiebreaking, two-run homer off Michael Lorenzen (0-1) in the seventh inning, DeJong's ninth home run this season and first since May 18. He had been is a 3-for-43 slide with no extra-base hits.
Matt Carpenter, Kolten Wong, Marcel Ozuna and Dexter Fowler swiped bases for the Cardinals, who are tied with Milwaukee for the NL lead with 37. Wong became the only player in the major leagues who has 10 steals without being caught.
St. Louis (31-29) has struggled since a 20-10 start. After dropping five games back in the division in late May, the Cardinals began the day 3½ games behind the NL Central-leading Chicago Cubs. St. Louis went 4-1 on its homestand.
John Gant (5-0) pitched 1 1/3 innings of perfect relief in his ninth relief appearance of four outs or more this season. He is tied with Adam Wainwright for the team lead in wins. Jordan Hicks pitched a 1-2-3 ninth for his 12th save in 13 chances.
Cardinals starter Dakota Hudson allowed one run and five hits in 6 1/3 innings, which matched his high in 12 starts this season.
Anthony DeSclafani gave up one run and six hits in five innings for the Reds, who have lost three of four.
Harrison Bader singled leading off the third, Hudson sacrificed and Bader realized third base was uncovered and kept on running, sliding in head first. Carpenter singled through the drawn-in infield.
Tucker Barnhart hit a sacrifice fly in the fourth.
Cardinals: RHP Mike Mayers (right lat strain) is slated to throw a bullpen session Friday or Saturday according to manager Mike Shildt.
Reds: RHP Tyler Mahle (2-5, 4.26) is to start the opener of a three-game series at Philadelphia on Friday night. Mahle allowed three runs in one inning in his lone previous start against the Phillies, last July 26.
Cardinals: RHP Miles Mikolas (4-5, 4.11) starts at the Chicago Cubs in the beginning of a season-high 10-game trip.