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Alvarez's 2 Homers Boost Pirates

AP Photo

With their flickering playoff hopes hanging in the balance Tuesday, the Pirates showed they still can pack a punch.

The Pirates routed the St. Louis Cardinals, 9-0, and moved back to within two games of the final National League wild card spot. The third game of the series is Wednesday

Right-hander James McDonald bullied the Cardinals for seven innings, allowing only two hits and striking out six. Pedro Alvarez slugged two homers, including a 469-foot solo shot that’s the longest clout by a Pirate at PNC Park.

“That ball looked like it was going to hit the (Clemente) bridge,” manager Clint Hurdle said. “That’s a whole bunch of feet.”

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