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Alvarez hits two homers as Pirates pound Cards

Game 2 between Cards and Pirates can be heard today on Genuine Country 94.3 WMKR beginning at 5:30pm.

Pittsburgh,  PA (SportsNetwork.com) - Pedro Alvarez stroked two solo home runs 
and  finished with three  RBI to help the Pittsburgh Pirates to a 12-2 rout of 
the St. Louis Cardinals on Friday to open a three-game series. 

It  was the first time the teams played since Adam Wainwright outdueled Gerrit 
Cole, 6-1, in Game 5 of the 2013 NLDS. 

Cole (1-0), who toed the rubber for Pittsburgh on Friday, worked seven innings 
and allowed two runs on six hits with three strikeouts to earn the win. 

The start was Cole's first in the regular season against the reigning National 
League champions. He defeated the Cards in Game 2 of the NLDS with six innings 
of one-run ball before dropping the pivotal fifth game. 

Travis Ishikawa also hit a solo shot for the Pirates, who opened the season by 
taking 2-of-3 from the Chicago Cubs. 

Andrew  McCutchen and  Russell Martin each collected two hits and knocked in a 
pair  of  runs, while Starling Marte  had three hits  with a run scored in the 

Matt  Carpenter accounted for the only runs in the setback, crushing a two-run 
homer to right field in the fifth inning. 

Shelby  Miller (0-1) was  on the bump for St. Louis, surrendering five runs on 
six hits with three walks and two strikeouts over 5 1/3 innings. St. Louis has 
lost two of its last three games. 

Alvarez  led  off the bottom  of the second  with an opposite-field blast that 
opened the scoring. 

Cole  worked his way  out of a bases-loaded jam in the top half of the fourth. 
After  retiring nine straight batters, Kolten Wong singled to left before Matt 
Holliday laced a single to center. 

Allen  Craig and  Yadier Molina were then  set down in order after each hitter 
flew  out, then  Matt Adams walked to load the bases. Jhonny Peralta proceeded 
to fly out to right and Cole escaped the inning unscathed. 

Alvarez  started  the home  half of  the fourth  much like  he did the second, 
hitting a towering drive to right-center that pushed the hosts' lead to 2-0. 

Two batters later, Ishikawa blasted one over the right-field fence to give the 
Pirates a three-run edge. 

Following  a  single from  Miller, Carpenter  belted a homer  over the wall in 
right to cut the deficit to 3-2. 

Pittsburgh  broke the  game open in the late innings as Martin singled Alvarez 
home and then scored on a throwing error by Molina. 

Pinch-hitter  Gaby  Sanchez then  drove Neil  Walker in with  a single and the 
Pirates took a 6-2 lead into the seventh. 

Martin  added on in  the bottom of the seventh with a bases-loaded single that 
plated Travis Snider. 

McCutchen  highlighted  a five-run eighth  with a  two-run triple to right and 
Justin Wilson finished the Cardinals with a scoreless ninth. 

                                   Game Notes 

Entering  the  game, Miller  was 0-4 with  a 5.32 ERA  against the Pirates ... 
Marte  tripled with  two outs in the  third but was stranded after a McCutchen 
lineout  ... Pittsburgh  was 6-for-11 with runners in scoring position ... The 
Bucs  pounded out 16 hits to just six for St. Louis ... The Cardinals send Joe 
Kelly to the mound on Saturday and he will oppose Francisco Liriano, who makes 
his second start of the season. 

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