Wainwright throws CG on 39th birthday, Cards top Indians 7-2

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St. Louis Cardinals starting pitcher Adam Wainwright delivers during the first inning of a baseball game Cleveland Indians, Sunday, Aug. 30, 2020, in St. Louis. (AP Photo/Scott Kane)

ST. LOUIS – Adam Wainwright turned back the clock with a complete game on his 39th birthday as the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Cleveland Indians 7-2 Sunday.

Wainwright threw a four-hitter for his 23rd career complete game and first in four years. The Cardinals snapped a four-game skid in which they scored six total runs.

“It’s just, you know, a lot of hard work from a lot of different people have gone into making me able to pitch this year and pitch well,” an emotional Wainwright said. “You know, when you think you’re done three years ago, and you’re able to complete a game a couple years later, it’s a crazy life, a crazy game.”

A little later, Wainwright was the target of some good-natured ribbing from younger teammates. When the Cardinals arrived at the airport for their trip to Cincinnati, he was given a wheelchair ride to the plane courtesy of fellow pitcher Jack Flaherty, who waited in full PPE with a small, handwritten sign seeking “Mr. Adam Wainwright.”

“He respects his elders so much,” Wainwright tweeted. “Good one young fella.”

Dexter Fowler homered and had three RBIs for St. Louis, which stopped Cleveland’s four-game winning streak. The Indians had won nine in a row on the road.

Wainwright (3-0) settled in after allowing a two-run homer to Tyler Naquin in the second inning. The right-hander struck out nine and walked two, going the distance for the first time since July 16, 2016, against the Marlins.

The performance even prompted the entire Indians team to salute him after the final out.