ST. LOUIS -- For three games, the Los Angeles Dodgers piled up hits and had nothing to show for it. To end a season-worst four-game losing streak, they made a few count.
"We've been playing hard, we haven't been driving in any runs," Kemp said. "Our starting pitching has kept us in the ballgames and we've just got to get it done when we've got runners in scoring position."
Blake had four hits and is 7-for-10 the last two games for Los Angeles, which avoided a four-game sweep and has not been swept all season. The Dodgers lead the NL in hitting and are second in scoring with an average of nearly five runs. They finally got rolling after totaling three runs on 33 hits the first three games.
"It was important to get yesterday's game, so you can imagine what today's was," manager Joe Torre said. "To bounce back, it doesn't surprise me."
The Dodgers were 4-for-11 with runners in scoring position after going 4-for-25 the first three games. James McDonald (3-2) worked a perfect ninth and Jonathan Broxton, one strike away from ending the Dodgers' slump Wednesday, finished for his 24th save in 27 chances.
"We're going to have some games where we give it up some," Broxton said. "You've got to bounce back the next day and have fun."
Albert Pujols, who lined a game-winning single off Jeff Weaver in the 15th inning Wednesday night, tapped out to the mound for the final out. The Cardinals, who scored 19 runs the first three games, totaled only six hits.
"We made a fight out of it, but offensively we got shut down," manager Tony La Russa said. "They pitched us very well."
Manny Ramirez was 3-for-18 in the series with no RBIs and he's 4-for-26 in his last six games with no RBIs. Boos rained down on him throughout the game, just as they did the first three games before the New York Times reported Thursday he had tested positive for steroids in 2003.
Matt Holliday became the lone Cardinal to reach base safely two or more times in his first seven games, getting an RBI single and his first homer for his new team in the first two at-bats. Holliday is batting .520 (13-for-25) since coming from the Athletics and is a career .396 hitter at 4-year-old Busch Stadium with six homers and 10 RBIs.
Holliday is the first Cardinal since Bo Hart in 2003 to hit safely in his first seven games.
Andre Ethier walked with one out against Dennys Reyes (0-2), Blake singled and the runners advanced on a wild pitch. With two outs, Kemp lined a single off Todd Wellemeyer, moved to the bullpen after his last start and making only his second relief appearance of the season.
Four straight Dodgers reached against Kyle McClellan with one out in the seventh. Pinch-hitter Juan Pierre had an infield hit and scored from first on Rafael Furcal's two-run double that put Los Angeles ahead 3-2.
Ankiel homered leading off the eighth, ending Guillermo Mota's scoreless streak at 20 1/3 innings and tying it at 3.
Both starters were pulled after six innings. Kyle Lohse allowed a run on five hits in the best of four starts since missing a month with a forearm injury for St. Louis, departing with a one-run lead, while Hiroki Kuroda gave up two runs on four hits for the Dodgers.
Cardinals SS Brendan Ryan bruised his left ankle on a foul ball in the second and was replaced by Julio Lugo. X-rays were negative but he left Busch Stadium on crutches. "It was kind of scary there for a second," Ryan said. "I'm glad to hear that nothing's broken or anything like that." ...The Cardinals plan to recall RHP Mitchell Boggs from Triple-A Memphis Friday to start the opener of a three-game series with Houston. Boggs replaces Wellemeyer.