All in all, the Cardinals have to feel pretty good about where they sit after a key showdown with their Central Division rival. For the seventh straight time at home, the Redbirds were able to win a series over Pittsburgh. Despite the fact that Lance Lynn was tagged seven runs in the first inning in an eventual 10-5 loss, the Pirates left town trailing by more than when they came in.
As hot as the Chicago Cubs have been, (winners of seven in a row), they still are 7.5 games out in the standings and in third place.
This was still not an easy win for the Pirates, although the first inning was ugly. Lynn couldn’t finish the first, leaving with just two batters retired. Four of the runs were unearned after a throwing error by third baseman Matt Carpenter. Neil Walker hit a triple and Andrew McCutchen doubled. Jung Ho Kang reached on that error and Pedro Alvarez followed with his 17th home run of the season, a two-run blast. Francisco Liriano and Gregory Polanco added RBI singles that finished Lynn, and Walker capped it by singling home a run off Tyler Lyons.
Lynn has some choice words on his performance (:30 montage)
Lyons saved the bullpen by throwing five shutout innings and the Cardinals made it a ball game, scoring five runs off Liriano and two others, making it a 7-5 game after seven innings.
Seth Maness, who has been reliable for Mike Matheny, ran into trouble in the top of the ninth as the Pirates piled on three more runs to add the extra padding and guarantee there would not be a 31st come from behind win for the Cardinals.