Cardinals win again, pull to 3½ games back of wild card

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Allen Craig hit two homers and drove in

three runs, Chris Carpenter gave up eight hits in eight innings,

and the St. Louis Cardinals improved their playoff chances with a

5-0 victory over the Philadelphia Phillies on Sunday night.

Albert Pujols also homered for the Cardinals (83-69), who pulled

within 3½ games of the Atlanta Braves in the NL wild-card chase

with their ninth win in 11 games. The Cardinals remained 6½ back of

the Milwaukee Brewers in the NL Central.

Carpenter (15-8) recorded all but four of his outs by

groundballs, and induced three double plays. Only three Phillies

reached second and none advanced to third. Carpenter finished with

five strikeouts and one walk.

Chase Utley had three hits for the Phillies (98-53).