The Philadelphia Phillies (76-72) pulled into a tie with the Reds in the wild-card race, while the Padres, who were swept by the Cardinals, are 3½ games back of the Cardinals.
The Cardinals have won eight straight games. The last time they lost a game, on Sept. 10 to the Reds, they trailed the Reds and Padres by three games.
The Cardinals now have a 73.1 percent chance of winning the wild card, according to FanGraphs.com. The Reds have a 14.3 percent chance.
The Reds have 12 games remaining. The Cardinals have 14 games left. The Phillies and Padres each have 13 games to go.
Here’s how the schedules of the contenders compare:
• Cardinals: Sept. 20-23, at Milwaukee Brewers; Sept. 24-26, at Chicago Cubs (66-83); Sept. 28-30, vs. Milwaukee; Oct. 1-3, vs. Cubs.
• Reds: Sept. 20-22, vs. Pittsburgh Pirates; Sept. 23-26, vs. Washington Nationals; Sept. 28-29, at Chicago White Sox; Oct. 1-3, at Pirates.
• Phillies: Sept. 20-22, vs. Baltimore Orioles; Sept. 23-26, vs. Pirates; Sept. 28-30, at Atlanta Braves; Oct. 1-3, at Marlins.
• Padres: Sept. 21-23, vs. San Francisco Giants; Sept. 24-26, vs. Braves; Sept. 28-30, at Los Angeles Dodgers; Oct. 1-3, at Giants.
The winner of the second wild-card will play on the road against the Giants or Dodgers, whoever doesn’t win the West Division, on Oct. 6. That game will air on TBS.