ST. LOUIS - Cincinnati's Bronson Arroyo took his best shot at the St. Louis Cardinals last night. It simply wasn't enough.

ST. LOUIS — Cincinnati’s Bronson Arroyo took his best shot at the St. Louis Cardinals last night. It simply wasn’t enough.

Arroyo threw seven strong innings but made one mistake against Matt Holliday, who hit a two-run homer to help the Cardinals end a three-game losing streak with a 2-1 victory over the Reds.

Arroyo (2-3) surrendered six hits in recording his fourth quality start in six outings. He retired the leadoff batter in all seven innings and did not allow a runner to reach second base.

“I can’t complain about it; 78 pitches in seven innings,” Arroyo said. “For the most part, I commanded the lineup the way I wanted to.”

Arroyo came up on the short end of a duel with Jaime Garcia (3-1), who gave up one run and seven hits, struck out three and walked none. Garcia improved to 7-0 in eight starts against the Reds at Busch Stadium and is 9-2 overall with a 3.18 ERA against them in 13 starts. He retired the last seven batters he faced and recorded 18 ground-ball outs.

“I pitched a good ballgame,” Arroyo said. “But Mr. Garcia pitched a little bit better.”

Edward Mujica struck out the side in the ninth for his fifth save in as many chances.

Holliday’s first homer since April 19 decided a well-played contest between the two National League Central rivals.

“We hate to lose it, but that was a great game,” Reds manager Dusty Baker said. “If we keep playing like that, and get pitching like that, we’re going to win a lot of ballgames.”

Holliday muscled a 3-and-2 pitch from Arroyo into the first few rows of the stands. Arroyo said he put the pitch in the desired spot.

“The guy is a beast,” Arroyo said of Holliday. “He’s solid and he swings the bat about as hard as anyone in the game. There are only a handful of guys who hit the ball with such a low trajectory and get it out.”

The Cardinals had managed just one run in their previous 23 innings before the homer.

Cincinnati took a 1-0 lead in the fifth on a run-scoring double by Shin-Soo Choo, who has reached safely in 26 of 27 games this season. He brought in Derrick Robinson with a drive off the left-field wall, breaking a 2-for-20 skid.

Mujica needed just 19 pitches to strike out Joey Votto, Brandon Phillips and Jay Bruce.