(SportsNetwork.com) - The Philadelphia Phillies will try to extend their longest winning streak of the season on Friday evening when they resume a four-game series with the St. Louis Cardinals.
The Phillies picked up their fourth straight victory by winning last night's opener, 4-1, with Ryan Howard keying the offense with a two-run homer and an RBI single.
David Buchanan, meanwhile, turned in the best outing of his young career by giving up just one run on four hits and a walk in 7 2/3 frames of work.
"He rose to the occasion and I think he has that kind of makeup and that kind of character," Phillies manager Ryne Sandberg said of Buchanan.
Philadelphia has won eight of its last 10, moving to within five games of .500.
Matt Carpenter drove in a run while Shelby Miller was touched for all four runs on seven hits over 6 2/3 innings as the Cardinals lost their second straight on the heels of winning five in a row.
"I felt good but at the same time I didn't make the best pitches at some points. I left the ball over the middle at times," Miller said.
Cardinals left-hander Jamie Garcia has felt good as of late and he goes for a third straight winning start this evening.
Garcia has given up just one run, eight hits and walked five over 14 innings of his two-game win streak, improving to 3-0 with a 3.72 earned run average in six starts on the year.
The 27-year-old also has kept the ball in the park as of late, yielding zero homers over his last two starts after giving up five in his first four outings.
Garcia is 2-3 with a 2.77 ERA in eight meetings (6 starts) with the Phillies, who counter with veteran A.J. Burnett.
Burnett has lost three of his past four decisions, but was able to give Philadelphia eight innings of work against the Chicago Cubs on Sunday. However, he got no run support in a 3-0 setback, giving up all three runs and falling to 4-6 on the year with a 4.17 ERA.
"I've got to go out there and try to get outs," said Burnett. "I can't worry about (lack of run support)."
The 37-year-old righty is 8-6 in 17 career starts against the Cardinals with a 4.11 ERA.
Phillies third baseman Reid Brignac left Thursday's opener with an ankle injury suffered in the fifth inning and his status is unknown, but the club had already expected to active former starter at third base Cody Asche, who hit .258 with four homers in 40 games before suffering a strained left hamstring on May 22.
The Phillies were swept in three games last season in their lone trip to St. Louis, outscored 18-5.