Series Summary 9/5-7: Cardinals @ Pirates

yadier-molina-and-jhonny-peralta

Photo is credited to Getty Images.

This week, the Pirates hosted the Cardinals for a three-game series at PNC Park in Pittsburgh, accounting for the teams’ second-to-last meeting of the regular season.

Game One: Cardinals 12, Pirates 6 — WP: Adam Wainwright (10-8) LP: Chad Kuhl (3-3)

Adam Wainwright’s big day in the batter’s box backed the Cardinals in their 12-6 victory over the Pirates in the first game of the teams’ three-game series on Monday at PNC Park in Pittsburgh.

Wainwright, who allowed four runs over five innings to earn his first win since July 16, went 2-for-3 with a double — his sixth of the season — three RBIs, and a run scored. Two of Wainwright’s RBIs came as part of a four-run fourth inning the Cardinals put up against Pirates hurler Jeff Locke.

The four-run frame ultimately proved to be the icing on top of the cake for the Cardinals; however, the Pirates swatted two home runs before the game concluded, including Andrew McCutchen’s 20th homer and Adam Frazier’s second blast.

Game Two: Cardinals 9, Pirates 7 — WP: Mike Mayers (1-1) LP: Tony Watson (2-4) SV: Seung Hwan Oh (16)

An improbable comeback with two outs in the ninth inning staged by St. Louis capped off what turned out to be an historic, 9-7 victory for the Cardinals on Tuesday night at PNC Park against the Pirates.

On the losing end of a 6-5 score with the bases empty, two outs, and an 0-2 count not in his favor, Cardinals pinch hitter Matt Carpenter teed off on Pirates closer Tony Watson’s delivery and hammered the pitch to right-center field to tie the game at six runs apiece. With a runner on second, center-fielder Randal Grichuk launched a Watson pitch to left field for a no-doubt, two-run home run that put the Cardinals ahead, 8-6, and Jhonny Peralta’s home run that provided an insurance tally.

Carpenter’s pinch-hit home run was the fifteenth the Cardinals have hit this season, setting a new major-league record. Including Yadier Molina’s grand slam in the first inning and Matt Adams’ solo shot in the third, the Cardinals homered five times on Tuesday.

Before Wednesday’s game, the Cardinals activated Mike Leake off the disabled list to make the start in the series finale. Leake had been out since late August with shingles.

Game Three: Pirates 4, Cardinals 3 — WP: Trevor Williams (1-0) LP: Alex Reyes (1-1) SV: Tony Watson (11)

Jung Ho Kang’s third home run in two days against the Cardinals powered the Bucs to a 4-3 win at PNC Park on Wednesday to snap the Pirates’ eight-game losing streak.

Kang, who returned on September 5 after missing about two weeks with a shoulder injury, hit the home run in the bottom of the eighth off Cardinals flamethrower Alex Reyes, a 21-year-old righty that has allowed just four extra-base hits in 27.1 innings at the major-league level. Reyes worked 3.2 innings in relief of Mike Leake, who lasted 4.1 frames in his first start since August 21.

Pirates hurler Trevor Williams threw three innings of one-run ball in his major-league debut and picked up his first win. Williams held the Cardinals to one run (not earned) on three hits and recorded the first three punchouts of his career.

What’s next?

Cardinals: After their roadtrip through Milwaukee, Cincinnati, and Pittsburgh, the Cardinals are returning to Busch Stadium for a seven-game homestand that will begin on Thursday, when the Brewers come in for four games.

Pirates: With their eight-game skid in the books, the Pirates will welcome the Reds to PNC Park on Thursday for the first of four games.

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