Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Jolly Roger flies high in Pittsburgh

Pirates strike late to take 2-1 lead over Cardinals

  • Print

PITTSBURGH -- Pinch-runner Josh Harrison stood on second base in the bottom of the eighth inning and pointed to Pittsburgh Pirates third base coach Nick Leyva.

"I told him to get that arm ready, because I'm coming," Harrison said.

Moments later, Harrison was streaking across home plate to give the Pirates the lead. Minutes after that, the Jolly Roger that's been a fixture on the Pittsburgh skyline all summer climbed up the flagpole again.

Harrison scored on Pedro Alvarez's tiebreaking single Sunday, sending the Pirates to a 5-3 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals that staked Pittsburgh to a 2-1 lead in the best-of-five NL division series.

Russell Martin followed with a sharp RBI single against reliever Kevin Siegrist, who took over after Carlos Martinez (0-1) faltered.

The go-ahead single was the latest big hit by Alvarez. He homered in the first two games and is 4-for-10 with four RBI in the series.

Alvarez also kept the Pirates' famous flag flying high in October. "Raise the Jolly Roger!" is the rallying cry for this wild-card team, now one victory from its first post-season series win since Willie Stargell, Dave Parker and the "We Are Family" gang won it all in 1979.

"We're continuing to surprise a lot of people, I believe. We're continuing to show people that we're not done, that we're not just happy to be in the post-season," star centre fielder Andrew McCutchen said. "We're fighting to win a World Series."

Heady territory for a franchise that had endured a record 20 consecutive years of losing coming into this season. Six months later, the Pirates are on the cusp of knocking out baseball royalty.

Mark Melancon (1-0) picked up the win despite allowing Carlos Beltran's tying home run in the top of the eighth. Jason Grilli worked the ninth for a save.

Charlie Morton is set to start for Pittsburgh in Game 4 today against rookie Michael Wacha.

Beltran finished 2-for-3 with three RBI. His 16th playoff home run moved him past Babe Ruth for eighth place in post-season history.

"It's a must-win tomorrow for us," Beltran said. "Hopefully we can come here tomorrow, take care of business, win and go play the last game at home."

Beltran's shot temporarily silenced a rocking crowd at PNC Park. It also set the stage for another dramatic win by the Pirates.

McCutchen led off the eighth with his second hit, a double to left. But the NL MVP candidate unwisely tried to advance on Justin Morneau's grounder to shortstop and was an easy out at third.

Harrison ran for Morneau and moved up when Marlon Byrd walked. St. Louis manager Mike Matheny turned to a lefty in Siegrist to face the left-handed Alvarez. The Pittsburgh slugger tied for the NL lead with 36 homers during the regular season, but hit just .180 against lefties.

"I just knew it was going to be a tough matchup," Alvarez said. "I've seen him a couple of times before. I haven't had much success. He threw me a couple of fastballs out over the plate."

One too many, as it turned out, and Alvarez singled between first and second.

-- The Associated Press

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition October 7, 2013 C11

Fact Check

Fact Check

Have you found an error, or know of something we’ve missed in one of our stories?
Please use the form below and let us know.

* Required
  • Please post the headline of the story or the title of the video with the error.

  • Please post exactly what was wrong with the story.

  • Please indicate your source for the correct information.

  • Yes

    No

  • This will only be used to contact you if we have a question about your submission, it will not be used to identify you or be published.

  • Cancel

Having problems with the form?

Contact Us Directly
  • Print

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

You can comment on most stories on winnipegfreepress.com. You can also agree or disagree with other comments. All you need to do is be a Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscriber to join the conversation and give your feedback.

Have Your Say

New to commenting? Check out our Frequently Asked Questions.

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press print or e-edition subscribers only. why?

Have Your Say

Comments are open to Winnipeg Free Press Subscribers only. why?

The Winnipeg Free Press does not necessarily endorse any of the views posted. By submitting your comment, you agree to our Terms and Conditions. These terms were revised effective April 16, 2010.

letters

Make text: Larger | Smaller

LATEST VIDEO

Humans of the Holidays

View more like this

Photo Store Gallery

  • STDUP ‚Äì Beautiful West End  begins it's summer of bloom with boulevard s, front yards  and even back lane gardens ,  coming alive with flowers , daisies and poppies  dress up a backyard lane on Camden St near Wolseley Ave  KEN GIGLIOTTI  / WINNIPEG FREE PRESS  /  June 26 2012
  • Marc Gallant / Winnipeg Free Press. Local- Weather standup. Sundog. Refraction of light through ice crystals which caused both the sun dog and and fog along McPhillips Road early Wednesday morning. 071205.

View More Gallery Photos

Poll

Who should get more playing time in Jets net?

View Results

View Related Story

Ads by Google