A two-run homer by Russell Martin sparked a four-run seventh inning en route to the Pirates' 5-3 comeback victory today at Busch Stadium.
Martin went 2 for 4 with two RBIs and two runs, and his third home run of the season tied the score in the seventh inning after the Pirates failed to score against Cardinals starter Jake Westbrook.
A.J. Burnett (2-2) earned the win, though he did not throw a single pitch with the lead. That's because Westbrook controlled the Pirates, a team he has struggled to manage throughout his career.
Westbrook pitched six scoreless innings to drop his ERA this season to 0.98. He struck out six batters and allowed six hits.
Prior to Saturday, Westbrook was 1-7 with a 5.28 ERA against the Pirates.
But once he left the game, the Pirates (14-10) found some traction on offense.
Clint Barmes went 2 for 3, drew a walk and scored a run.
The victory stops a four game winning streak for the Cardinals (14-10).
Following Martin's two-run homer, Andrew McCutchen drew a bases-loaded walk later in the inning to give the Pirates their first lead of the series, and Daniel Descalso failed to turn a double play on a Garrett Jones ground ball, a fielder's choice that allowed Starling Marte to score and extend the Pirates' lead.
Pirates reliever Tony Watson got through the top of the Cardinals order in the bottom half of the inning, getting Matt Carpenter to pop out and Carlos Beltran and Matt Holliday to strike out after giving up a leadoff walk.
St. Louis doubled an early lead in the sixth inning with some two-out offense. Jon Jay doubled to the right field corner with two outs, the fifth Cardinals player to reach base with two outs. Pete Kozma followed with an RBI single up the middle of the infield to give the Cardinals a 2-0 lead.
The Cardinals attacked Burnett to grab a 1-0 lead in the first inning. Carpenter and Beltran led off the inning with back-to-back singles, putting runners on first and second with no outs. It was the second consecutive game Carpenter and Beltran led off the first with consecutive hits.
Burnett managed to limit the damage by getting Holliday to ground into a double play, but Carpenter, who moved to third on Beltran's single, scored.
Pirates closer Jason Grilli allowed his first earned run of the season in the ninth inning but picked up his 10th save of the year.
Michael Sanserino: email@example.com, 412-263-1722 or on Twitter @msanserino. First Published April 28, 2013 12:00 AM