It was a “feel-good” night all around for the Pittsburgh Pirates and their fans at PNC Park, beating the St. Louis Cardinals in the first game of their three-game series by an 11-1 score.
Joshua Palacios led the charge with five RBIs, while Connor Joe had three hits and scored four times as the Bucs put this game out of reach early, and then added some late inning runs just for fun. The loss continued what has been a disastrously disappointing campaign for the Cardinals, who sit in unchartered territory – fifth place in the National League Central division.
Pittsburgh jumped all over St. Louis in the first inning. A single by Endy Rodriguez scored Bryan Reynolds, and Joe scored later in the inning on a wild pitch to give them an early 2-0 lead. A two-run single by Liover Peguero in the third and an RBI double by Joe in the fourth extended the lead to 5-0, setting the table for Palacios’ monster three-run homerun to make it an 8-0 lead at the game’s halfway point.
The Cardinals’ lone run came off the bat of Andrew Knizner, who hit is 10th homerun of the season in the fifth inning. In the bottom of the eighth, Palacios stepped to the plate and ripped a two-run double to center field, bumping the lead up to 10-1. Alika Williams completed the scoring with a double to left field, scoring Palacios to make it 11-1.
Amongst all of the runs being scored on Monday was a strong pitching performance from the Bucs. Thomas Hatch started the game, lasting three innings and giving up two hits and a walk. Bailey Falter pitched the game’s final six innings, giving up one run on three hits while striking out eight batters on the way to his first victory of the season.
It was an all-around easy, feel-good victory for the Pirates. It was much-needed after some hard-fought losses in recent series. While this week’s matchup is one of the two bottom-dwellers of the division, it is always a good feeling to beat the Cardinals.
The Pirates will face a familiar foe, at least to their fans, on Tuesday night at PNC Park. Adam Wainwright will be on the mound for St. Louis, while Pittsburgh will send Johan Oviedo to the bump. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05pm.
Record vs. Cardinals: 6-2
Record vs. N.L. Central: 15-19
Record at Home: 30-32
Overall Record: 56-69
Let’s Go Bucs!