MILWAUKEE -- Jesus Aguilar homered for the second consecutive game and Matt Garza worked into the sixth inning for the Milwaukee Brewers, who won a series for just the second time since the All-Star break with a 2-1 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals on Thursday afternoon at Miller Park.
Fresh off a short stint on the disabled list for a strained right calf, Garza (5-5) held St. Louis to a run on four hits and two walks while striking out four over 5 2/3 innings of work.
Michael Wacha went four innings for St. Louis, allowing one run -- the solo homer by Aguilar in the third -- on five hits and three walks while striking out five.
Aguilar's 11th home run of the season provided an early lead as Garza retired 11 of his first 12 batters. He finally ran into trouble in the fifth with a pair of walks to open the inning. Garza struck out Stephen Piscotty for the first out but Greg Garcia followed with an RBI single, trying the game at 1.
Pinch hitter Luke Voit chopped into a double play to end the inning.
Jacob Barnes took over for Garza with two on and two outs in the sixth and ended the threat by getting Yadier Molina to fly out to center. Barnes erased a leadoff walk in the sixth with an inning-ending double play and Anthony Swarzak preserved the lead with a scoreless eighth.
The Cardinals threatened in the ninth, putting the go-ahead run on with two out but Corey Knebel struck out Garcia to record his 20th save of the season.
NOTES: The Brewers activated RHP Matt Garza from the disabled list Thursday but have not announced starting pitchers for their weekend series at Tampa. RHP Brandon Woodruff, who last pitched Saturday for Triple-A Colorado Springs, is considered a strong possibility to start Friday. ... RHP Wily Peralta and OF Kirk Nieuwenhuis cleared waivers and accepted outright assignments to Triple-A Colorado Springs on Thursday. Milwaukee designated both for assignment over the last week. ... Cardinals CF Dexter Fowler (strained arm) has resumed baseball activities back in St. Louis and will rejoin the team when it visits Cincinnati this weekend, manager Mike Matheny said. ... 1B Matt Carpenter returned to the Cardinals' lineup Thursday. He was a late scratch a night earlier because of a sore hip.