It marked the ninth time in 19 defeats that the Cardinals had lost by five or more runs, meaning that the club has been less than competitive in nearly half its losses.
And the defeat extended right-hander Kip Wells' personal losing streak to six games and added to his league-high loss total, which is seven. Again, Wells had his moments, striking out eight. But he also gave up two homers -- a two-run drive by third baseman Russell Branyan (who had two for the night) and a solo shot by shortstop Khalil Greene.
Wells was a little better this time, at least. He allowed four runs in six innings after giving up seven earned runs in each of his last three starts.
"It isn't great," said Wells. "But they hit me around in the middle innings and I was able to settle down."
Yet, Wells is hanging too many breaking balls.
"We've got some stuff to work on, for sure," said manager Tony La Russa. "Not good enough."
The Cardinals mustered just three hits, one a double by Wells, as they scored three runs or fewer for an almost unbelievable 24th time in 33 games.
Wells hasn't had a lead in a month.
PADRES 7, CARDINALS 0: The Cardinals had beaten San Diego's Jake Peavy in last year's playoffs, but they were only 1-4 against him in regular-season play. On Friday, they had no chance, fanning 10 times in seven innings against Peavy while collecting just three hits. In no inning did the Cardinals have more than one runner. Cardinals pitchers gave up three homers -- two to Padres third baseman Russell Branyan.
NOTES AND QUOTES
--3B Scott Rolen, who had been 1-for-34, got a bloop single in the second inning and waked in the ninth.
--Friday's game was the eighth straight in which the Cardinals didn't homer.
--1B Albert Pujols had been six for 12 in his career against RHP Jake Peavy, but struck out twice against Peavy Friday.
--Though the Cardinals had just three hits, they stole two bases against San Diego C Josh Bard.
--RHP Kip Wells had been 4-1 against San Diego in his career before dropping Friday's game. The Cardinals have been blanked in Wells' last two losses and been outscored by 20 runs in those games.