Kershaw matched a career-high with 132 pitches in a complete-game victory. He allowed one run on six hits and fanned a season-best 15.
The super lefty surrendered a run-scoring single to Angel Pagan in the sixth, but was otherwise nearly flawless.
Kershaw is now 12-6 with a 2.18 ERA that has reached its lowest point of the year. He has given up one run or less in 11 of his last 12 outings.
Cain is on the 15-day disabled list with an elbow injury.
The left-hander held the Nationals to three runs on seven hits in six innings with one walk and six strikeouts. He received a no-decision.
The home run ball proved to be his undoing. He surrendered two blasts to Ryan Zimmerman and another to Jayson Werth.
It marked his first quality start in seven outings this season.
Scherzer did not retire the Cardinals in order in any of the six innings he pitched. But he got out of one jam after another in leaving with a no-decision. He gave up two runs - it could have been much worse - on 11 hits. Scherzer had his strikeout pitches going, which certainly helped. He fanned 10.
The only runs he allowed came on a Brandon Moss homer in the second and Tommy Pham single in the fifth.
Scherzer still remains winless in seven starts since July 30.
Locke was clobbered for five runs on nine hits in just 3 2/3 innings before his merciful removal from the game. He walked none and fanned two in lowering his record to 7-9 and raising his ERA to 4.66.
Two doubles and a single in the first inning resulted in two runs. He continued to get singled and doubled to death until he was through.
Locke has just one quality start over his last eight outings.
Nola was rocked for six runs on nine hits in just four innings against the host Mets. He walked none and fanned four.
Back-to-back three-run frames set him back. A double by Kelly Johnson and inside-the-park homer by Ruben Tehada plated three in the second, then a double by Daniel Murphy and dinger by Michael Conforto added three in the third.
The dud sent his ERA soaring from 3.26 to 4.02.
Harvey gave up four runs on nine hits in 6 1/3 innings with one walk and nine strikeouts.
He faced only two batters over the minimum in cruising through the first three innings, but three singles and two doubles in the fourth scored three. Harvey had not allowed three runs in any game - let alone one inning - over his previous eight starts.
A Darnell Sweeney home run in the seventh placed the last run on his ledger.
Roark will start in place of Stephen Strasburg, who is dealing with a back issue. Strasburg has been able to play catch recently and will throw a bullpen session Thursday.
Godley was sent down on Aug. 24 after performing well in five appearances, including three starts. He won all four of his decisions and posted a fine 1.90 ERA with 22 strikeouts in 23 2/3 innings.
The right-hander is coming off one of his finest performances of the season when he tossed seven shutout innings in San Francisco.
His injury is not considered serious, so he appears likely to pitch against the Cubs in another important set next week.