BALTIMORE, Md. - Kolten Wong went 4-for-5 with two runs scored to help the St. Louis Cardinals avoid a three-game sweep against the Baltimore Orioles with an 8-3 victory on Sunday.
Peter Bourjos hit a three-run homer to back a solid outing from Lance Lynn, who allowed three runs on nine hits with six strikeouts over 5 2/3 innings.
More importantly, Lynn (12-8) held the powerful AL East leaders homerless for the first time in the series. Baltimore launched nine homers in winning the first two games by a combined score of 22-5.
"We like having Lance on the mound in these situations," said Cardinals manager Mike Matheny, "and we felt good about what our offense could do."
Baltimore starter Kevin Gausman (6-4) was charged with three runs on eight hits over five innings. Nick Markakis and Nelson Cruz each knocked in a run for the O's.
Matt Carpenter, Wong and Matt Holliday each singled to open up the game for St. Louis in the first. Matt Adams grounded into a fielder's choice to score a run before Jhonny Peralta laced a single to center that scored Wong. Jon Jay walked to pack the bags again, but Oscar Taveras flied into a double play as Adam Jones gunned Adams down at the plate attempting to tag from third.
"I did a good job bouncing back in the second inning, but that first inning was a rough one," said Gausman. "It kind of seemed like wherever they hit the ball, we didn't have a guy there."
Baltimore answered in the home half with and RBI double off the bat of Cruz that cut the deficit to 2-1.
Jay got the run back in the third, however, ripping a single to right that scored Wong.
The O's trimmed the deficit to one again in the fifth. After back-to-back singles from Markakis and Manny Machado, Adam Jones flied out to center that allowed Markakis to move over to third. Lynn then uncorked a wild pitch that pushed Markakis across to make it a 3-2 game.
With one out and runners at the corners in the sixth, Daniel Descalso sent an RBI single to right, restoring St. Louis' two-run cushion.
The pendulum continued to swing in the home sixth, with Markakis making it a one-run game again courtesy of an RBI single to center.
Back-to-back doubles from Descalso and Carpenter made it 5-3 in the eighth, then a pinch-hitting Bourjos left little doubt of the outcome with his homer in the ninth.