Cardinals 14, Astros 2: David Freese belted his first career grand slam during a seven-run seventh inning and added a two-run blast in the ninth as visiting St. Louis claimed the rubber game of the three-game series.
Lance Lynn tossed six solid innings en route to his major league-leading ninth win, Shane Robinson belted a two-run homer and scored three runs and Rafael Furcal went 3-for-5 with two runs and two RBIs for the Cardinals, who completed a 4-6 road trip.
Allen Craig continued his torrid hitting at Minute Maid Park, going 3-for-5 with two runs and two RBIs. Craig owns a .419 average (13-for-31) with four home runs and 13 RBIs in nine contests at the Astros' stadium.
After spotting Houston a 2-0 lead, St. Louis moved ahead for good with a three-run third. Carlos Beltran belted a solo homer in the fifth and Furcal delivered his second RBI single of the night in the sixth before the Cardinals' offense erupted an inning later.
Robinson began the onslaught with his second homer and Craig added an RBI single before Freese deposited the first offering from Wesley Wright over the wall in left field for a 12-2 lead. Freese launched his 12th shot in the ninth off Brian Bogusevic, who came in from right field to pitch.
Lynn (9-2) allowed two runs and six hits while recording a career-high 11 strikeouts. The right-hander joined R.A. Dickey of the New York Mets as the league's only nine-game winners.
J.A. Happ (4-6) surrendered four runs, five hits and five walks in 4 2/3 innings. The left-hander, who struck out six, suffered his third straight loss and fell to 1-8 lifetime against the Cardinals.
Jed Lowrie went 2-for-4 with a solo homer for the Astros, who have lost 10 of 12.
GAME NOTEBOOK: St. Louis placed LH Jaime Garcia on the 15-day disabled list with strained shoulder. Garcia pitched only two innings in Tuesday's loss after missing his previous start with elbow problems. ... The Cardinals recalled RH Fernando Salas from Triple-A Memphis to replace Garcia on the roster. Salas went 0-3 with a 6.32 ERA in 18 relief appearances with the Cardinals earlier this season. ... The Astros officially signed 17-year-old SS Carlos Correa, who was selected first overall in the First-Year Player Draft on Monday.