PITTSBURGH (AP) - Pedro Alvarez homered twice and drove in four runs, James McDonald scattered two hits over seven innings and the Pittsburgh Pirates beats the St. Louis Cardinals 9-0 on Tuesday night.
Alvarez hit a two-run homer in the third to give the Pirates a comfortable lead, added an RBI double in the fourth then hit a 469-foot blast to center in the sixth. He went 4 for 5 as Pittsburgh drew within two games of the Cardinals in the race for the NL's second wild-card spot.
McDonald (12-6) gave up two hits, walked one and struck out six to beat the Cardinals and Jake Westbrook (13-10) for the second time in the last two weeks.
The Cardinals played most of the game without catcher Yadier Molina, who suffered neck, back and shoulder injuries following a violent collision at home plate with Pittsburgh second baseman Josh Harrison.