Rodon (3-3) was tagged for seven hits in four innings as the Cardinals built a 7-0 lead and went on to win 8-5 Tuesday night. He walked three batters, hit two more and allowed Matt Holliday's fourth-inning grand slam, falling to 1-3 with a 6.98 ERA over his last six starts as Chicago lost its third straight.
The stuff is there," Rodon said. "You've got to throw it over the plate and let your fielders make plays for you."
That's been a problem for Rodon, the third overall pick in last year's draft. In his last three starts, he has walked 13 batters while striking out only 19.
"It's coming out of the hand, but even the last time out, he got himself in some trouble and got out of it," Chicago manager Robin Ventura said. "This one didn't work out that way.
Rodon wasn't able to pitch out of a jam thanks to Holliday, whose grand slam was the sixth of his career.
"I felt comfortable coming out of the warm up and started off the game pretty good and it just didn't work out," Rodon said.
Things worked out better for St. Louis, which powered Michael Wacha (11-3) to the victory despite him allowing five runs in five innings. Mark Reynolds added a solo shot in the fifth and Trevor Rosenthal pitched the ninth for his 28th save in 30 chances.
"It was great to see him hit a ball like he can," Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said of Holliday. "It's just having him back on our club. He's just a big piece."
Holliday homered for the first time since May 12. He returned last Friday after missing 31 games because of a strained right quadriceps.
"I was just looking for a good pitch to hit with the bases loaded and hit it into the outfield," Holliday said.
White Sox rookie Tyler Saladino homered for the second straight game. He and Geovany Soto homered off Wacha in the fifth.
Four Cardinals relievers combined for four scoreless innings, handing the White Sox their fourth loss in five games since the All-Star break against division-leading Kansas City and St. Louis.
"Any time you get in a little bit of a rut it's disappointing," Ventura said. "I thought we were playing well right before the break."
Cardinals: RHP Mitch Harris (right groin strain) was sent to Triple-A Memphis to begin a 20-day rehab assignment. ... OF Jason Heyward started in right field after exiting Saturday night's game again the Mets because of leg cramps. Heyward, who also had a head cold, didn't start on Sunday, but pinch hit in an 18-inning 3-1 loss to New York.
White Sox LHP John Danks (5-8, 4.98) faces St. Louis RHP Lance Lynn (7-5, 2.79) on Wednesday in the second game of the two-game set. Danks will make his first career appearance against the Cardinals. Lynn is 1-0 with an 0.68 ERA in two career starts against the White Sox.
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Charlotte Hornets first-round pick Frank Kaminsky threw out a ceremonial first pitch and took batting practice. A lifelong White Sox fan, Kaminsky is a native of suburban Lisle and is still trying to process being selected by Chicago Bulls legend Michael Jordan. "It's very, very surreal," Kaminsky said.
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Stephen Piscotty, St. Louis' top hitting prospect, made his major league debut playing left field. He had an infield single in four at-bats and struck out twice. "He looked good," Matheny said.