MILWAUKEE -- Kyle Lohse finally beat the St. Louis Cardinals, and the win didn't come that easily.
Lohse beat the Cardinals in his fourth try this season and Sean Halton knocked in a career-high three runs to help the Milwaukee Brewers beat St. Louis 6-3 Tuesday night.
"They made me work for it," he said after improving to 3-5 in nine outings overall against his former team. "I felt like I threw a lot of really good pitches and they kept battling them off, fouling them off, taking close ones."
Lohse had his best major league season in 2012 when he went 16-3 with a 2.88 ERA in 33 starts with St. Louis. The Cardinals did not try to re-sign him and he became a free agent.
Lohse said the win was just like any other even if it snapped a five-game losing streak against the Cardinals.
"I don't put any more emphasis on any one game over the other," he said. "I went out there and tried to do what I'd been doing."
Lohse left after six innings with the Brewers leading 6-3. He earned his team-leading 17th quality start, including six in his last seven. He struck out four, walked two and allowed six hits and three runs, two coming on Yadier Molina's two-run homer in the fourth. Molina doubled and scored in the second on Matt Adams' single.
"Yadi hit a pretty pitch for a homer, but that's what he does," Lohse said.
John Axford and Brandon Kintzler each pitched a scoreless inning, and Jim Henderson pitched the ninth for his 19th save in 22 chances.
The Cardinals were ahead 3-0 when the Brewers fought back with a five-run fourth that put Lohse back in line for the victory.
"The team did a great job battling back after I put us in a hole," he said. "Other than that, doesn't mean any more beating them."
Lance Lynn (13-7) got roughed up in the fourth, highlighted by Halton's two-run single with the bases loaded.
Milwaukee's first six batters in the frame reached, loading the bases twice with no outs. Scooter Gennett drove in the first run with a single. After Aramis Ramirez singled and Khris Davis reached on Lynn's fielding error, Halton drove them in with a line drive to centre that doubled his season RBI total. Logan Schafer followed with an RBI single and Norichika Aoki tacked on the last run with a sacrifice fly.
"We stacked together a bunch of hits (Monday), and they did the exact same thing," St. Louis manager Mike Matheny said. "It is just a matter of stopping it when it gets going. We did the same thing yesterday. We found holes and created a rally."
Kolten Wong, who had his first two major league hits Monday night, continued getting on base for St. Louis. He went 3 for 5 with two singles and a double. The team's No. 1. pick in the 2011 draft joined the Cardinals from Triple-A Memphis Friday night in Chicago.
"It was just one of those innings where things are dropping, not going our way," he said. "Unfortunately, they scored a majority of their runs in that inning."
Halton set a career mark in the fifth with his third RBI of the game. Davis singled, stole second and scored on Halton's grounder into centre.
Carlos Beltran singled and scored on Molina's 10th home run of the season.
Adams beat the Brewers' defensive shift in the second inning and knocked in Molina with the Cardinals' first run. Adams blooped a single over the head of shortstop Jean Segura, positioned on the right side of second base. Molina was on with a double over the head of centre fielder Schafer. The ball flicked off Schafer's glove and rolled to the wall.
The Brewers have almost no chance at the playoffs and are resigned to playing the role of spoiler.
"I know we have a stretch here where we're playing a lot of teams that are contending for playoff spots," Lohse said. "I don't care who it is. Feels good to kind of hurt teams' chances."
NOTES: Brewers 1B Juan Francisco got the game off. He's struck out four times in consecutive games. "If I think he just needs one day, I will get him back in there tomorrow," manager Ron Roenicke said. Halton replaced him. ... Lynn is 2-2 in four starts facing the Brewers. ... Brewers CF Carlos Gomez remained out of the starting lineup after spraining his right knee colliding into the centre-field wall on Thursday night. He's missed five consecutive games. ... Segura stole his 37th base, matching Everth Cabrera of the San Diego Padres for the NL lead.