NEW YORK (AP) - Matt Harvey is beginning to know how Tom Seaver felt.
Aces of the New York Mets have to get used to a lack of run support.
Despite another outstanding start, Harvey lost for the first time this season. On an overcast afternoon at Citi Field when the rain held off, Adam Wainwright was a little bit better Thursday and pitched the St. Louis Cardinals to a 2-1 victory in a classic pitching matchup.
``If I go seven zeros, we're still playing the ballgame.' Harvey said. ``It's an incredible lineup. You really have to be locked in one through nine.'
Harvey (5-1) gave up one run and five hits in seven innings with seven strikeouts and a walk, ending a 14-start unbeaten streak dating to Sept. 12 but lowering his ERA to 2.04.
``He's as good as you're going to face in the big leagues,' said Matt Carpenter, who tripled in a run on a hanging curveball in the third. ``He's got electric stuff.'
Harvey had no-decisions in eight of his previous nine starts, and the Mets have scored just 18 runs while he's been in the game during his last 10 outings.
`You could tell that he's frustrated because ultimately he wants to win,' Mets captain David Wright said. ``He's pitched better than wins. He's gone out there doing a tremendous job.'
New York has scored one run or none in seven of Harvey's 24 starts since his debut July 26. The Mets' offense fizzled similarly in 88 of 395 starts for Seaver, according to STATS.
``You look at a guy who four more runs, is probably 8-0, 9-0 coming in today,' Mets manager Terry Collins said. ``When you pitch as well as he has and you're unable to win some games, it can be frustrating, especially for a young guy who's trying to make an impact in this league.'
Harvey opened impressively, striking out Carlos Beltran for the second out of the game with three 97 mph fastballs and topping out at 98. He shook off a second-inning comebacker by Yadier Molina that struck him on the left foot.
``He's doing a great job pitching and not just throwing,' Wainwright said.
Wainwright (10-3) became the major leagues' first 10-game winner, allowing four hits in seven scoreless innings with six strikeouts and two walks. He got his 1,000th strikeout when Wright was called out on a first-inning curveball and retired his first 11 batters before Wright's single.
Known best in New York for freezing Beltran with a called third strike to end Game 7 of the 2006 NL championship series, Wainwright had been 0-4 with an 8.46 ERA in four starts against the Mets since his only career win against them, in St. Louis on April 18, 2010.
``I had everybody in the world tell me I had never beat the Mets at their stadium, so it was something I wanted to do,' Wainwright said.
St. Louis forced Harvey out of the game in the seventh. With a runner on second and two outs, Kirk Nieuwenhuis was intentionally walked despite an 0-for-19 slide to bring up Harvey's spot in the batting order. Pinch-hitter Justin Turner grounded out on a slow roller to third baseman Daniel Descalso.
``Obviously, getting Harvey out of the game was something that was on our mind,' Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said.
New York's bullpen gave up a run in the eighth, when Carpenter and Beltran singled off Scott Rice, and Matt Holliday and Allen Craig singled against LaTroy Hawkins.
Marlon Byrd hit a long home run off Edward Mujica with one out in the ninth. John Buck doubled and took third as Nieuwenhuis grounded to Carpenter, who made a diving backhand stop as he fell and threw to first for the out.
``When it was hit, I thought he had a good chance of getting a base hit up the middle.' Carpenter said.
Pinch-hitter Josh Satin fouled off two full-count pitches and swung over a splitter as Mujica remained perfect in 19 save chances.
``Today I didn't do my job and put up zeros, and I get the loss,' Harvey said.
His next scheduled start is during Tuesday's day-night doubleheader at Atlanta, when right-hander Zack Wheeler is to make his major league debut for the Mets. The highly touted Wheeler, a Georgia native, made his last minor league outing for Triple-A Las Vegas against Tacoma on Thursday. He allowed one hit in 5 2-3 innings, struck out seven and walked two, throwing 85 pitches. Carlos Peguero hit a solo homer in the fifth.
``There's so much hype with this guy,' Collins said. ``It's even more than when Matt was going to pitch (for the first time) last year. He's going to pitch in Atlanta. It's an away game for us, it may be a home game for him, since he's from 50 miles away.'
NOTES: The Mets started the same lineup and batting order from Nos. 1-8 in three straight games for the first time since April 23-26, 2011, STATS said. .. New York was 0 for 4 with runners in scoring position, dropping to 3 for 39 (.077) on the homestand and 27 for 173 (.156) in their last 24 home games.
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