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Peralta unravels in middle innings, Alvarez homers twice as Pirates rout Brewers 10-2

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MILWAUKEE - It was midway through the fourth inning and Wily Peralta was dominating the Pittsburgh Pirates the same way he has many teams this year.

That's when everything unraveled.

Pedro Alvarez homered twice off Peralta in consecutive innings to break out of a 5-for-34 slump, and Pittsburgh beat the Milwaukee Brewers 10-2 on Saturday night.

Peralta (15-8) remained tied for the major league lead in wins.

"Anytime he gives up five runs, you have to wonder what's going on," Milwaukee manager Ron Roenicke said. "He made some bad pitches that (fourth) inning after those first two guys."

Alvarez hit a three-run shot in the fourth and a solo drive in the fifth. Peralta gave up eight runs, seven earned, over his final 1 2-3 innings.

"He's got a lot of power, both sides of the field," Peralta said. "I fell behind and threw a fastball right down the middle, missed right down the middle, and paid for it."

Russell Martin also connected for a three-run homer off the right-hander.

Pittsburgh starter Edinson Volquez (11-7) pitched out of trouble almost every inning to improve to 3-0 in five August starts. The right-hander allowed 11 hits and two walks in 5 2-3 innings, but Milwaukee managed only two runs off him.

"He was able to put a foot down and just stop it with quality pitches in quality locations," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said.

Third-place Pittsburgh won its third consecutive game to pull within four of the NL Central-leading Brewers.

Each team had 12 hits, but Pittsburgh took advantage of its chances while Milwaukee squandered its opportunities.

"Our big boys were up when we needed them up, but they got the big hits when we didn't," Roenicke said.

Alvarez, making only his eighth start this month and his second career start at first base, went 2 for 3 with a walk and his seventh stolen base.

"He's always dangerous," Roenicke said. "If you make bad pitches, he's a good mistake hitter, which major leaguers usually are. This guy can do a lot of damage."

Neil Walker went 3 for 4 with a double, a walk and three RBIs.

Scooter Gennett homered in the second for Milwaukee, his ninth.

BASERUNNING BLUNDER

With the Brewers down 9-2 in the sixth, Carlos Gomez was thrown out by a step trying to advance from first to third on a sharp single to left. Starling Marte's throw to Josh Harrison easily beat Gomez for the second out of the inning.

BAD LOSSES

For the first time this season, the Brewers have lost three consecutive games by four runs or more. "What bothers me is not playing good baseball," Roenicke said. "I say it a lot: It doesn't matter who it is or who it's against, you don't ever want to play this kind of ball."

TRAINER'S ROOM

Brewers: RHP Matt Garza will throw a bullpen session Sunday. He's been on the DL with a left oblique strain since Aug. 5, retroactive to Aug. 4.

UP NEXT

Pirates RHP Vance Worley (5-3) looks to bounce back from his worst start of the season when the teams conclude a three-game series Sunday. Worley allowed a season-high six runs in six innings Monday during a 7-3 loss to Atlanta.

Mike Fiers (3-1) will make his fourth start since replacing Garza in the rotation. Fiers has won all three of his previous starts and has a 0.86 ERA in those games.

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