Nine-run 8th powers Cards over Cubs in opener

Nine-run 8th powers Cards over Cubs in opener

CHICAGO -- The Cardinals stunned the red-hot Cubs, scoring a season-high nine runs in the eighth inning to post an 11-4 come-from-behind victory on Friday afternoon to snap Chicago's winning streak at six.

"That was a weird, weird inning," Cubs reliever Hector Rondon said. "That's the first time I've seen something like that -- nine runs with nobody out."

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Carrie Muskat has covered the Cubs since 1987, and for MLB.com since 2001. She writes a blog, Muskat Ramblings. You can follow her on Twitter @CarrieMuskat and listen to her podcast.

Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter, and Facebook.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cards get No. 75 prospect from Mariners

St. Louis receives outfielder O'Neill from Seattle in exchange for lefty Gonzales

Cards get No. 75 prospect from Mariners

CHICAGO -- Trading from one area of depth to enhance another, the Cardinals acquired power-hitting outfielder Tyler O'Neill from the Mariners on Friday for left-hander Marco Gonzales.

Cardinals president of baseball operations John Mozeliak described this as a "traditional trade" in that it helped two clubs address needs by swapping controllable young players. Both players were products of the 2013 MLB Draft, with Gonzales taken in the first round and O'Neill plucked by Seattle in the third.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter, and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Kelly, Grichuk, Duke make strong showings

Catcher, outfielder and reliever contribute to Cards' win following roster moves

Kelly, Grichuk, Duke make strong showings

CHICAGO -- The Cardinals began their series against the Cubs with six roster moves, including the promotion of baseball's top catching prospect and the return of a veteran reliever who underwent Tommy John surgery less than 10 months ago.

Carson Kelly, Zach Duke and Randal Grichuk joined the team in Chicago and all contributed to Friday's 11-4 win over the Cubs. To make room on the roster for the trio, the Cardinals optioned Magneuris Sierra to Double-A and Sam Tuivailala to Triple-A. Eric Fryer was designated for assignment.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter, and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

J. Martinez 'fine' after being hit by foul ball

Outfielder undergoes concussion tests after being struck on left temple in dugout

J. Martinez 'fine' after being hit by foul ball

CHICAGO -- Early in a nine-run inning that eventually lifted the Cardinals to an 11-4 win over the Cubs on Friday afternoon, St. Louis endured a bit of a scare when outfielder Jose Martinez was struck near his left temple by a foul ball into the visitors' dugout.

Martinez, who did not appear in the game, was quickly ushered out of the dugout and into the clubhouse, where the team put him through concussion protocol. The initial tests came back negative, though Martinez will be monitored at least through Saturday before receiving clearance to play.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter, and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

O'Neill's father was a top body builder

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O'Neill's father was a top body builder

One of the least appreciated aspects of trades is the opportunity they provide to occassionally unearth some new or forgotten biographical nuggets about the players involved. Friday's trade between the Cardinals and Mariners that sent outfield prospect Tyler O'Neill to St. Louis brought one of the better such moments.

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Mozeliak hoping to shake up 'attitude, culture'

Front office, players, coaches all responsible in rebuilding Cardinals' 'confidence'

Mozeliak hoping to shake up 'attitude, culture'

CHICAGO -- For weeks, speculation has abounded about how the Cardinals may approach the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline. Will they be a buyer or a seller? Is an impact bat the priority?

On Friday, president of baseball operations John Mozeliak suggested something else.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter, and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Wainwright, Cards take on rival Cubs

Wainwright, Cards take on rival Cubs

Jon Lester's last start had a bit of everything.

On the mound, Lester was his usual self, throwing seven innings of one-run ball in a Cubs win. What was atypical, however, was his offensive production, as the lefty reached safely twice -- once with a double and once with a walk -- and posted the first stolen base of his career.

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Scott Chasen is a reporter for MLB.com based in Chicago. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Flaherty makes scoreless start for Memphis

Flaherty makes scoreless start for Memphis

It's not a secret that when Touki Toussaint is right he can miss bats with the best of them.

That was the case on Friday, as the Braves' No. 11 prospect matched his career highs with 11 strikeouts in eight innings as he recorded his second straight double-digit strikeout performance for Class A Advanced Florida.

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Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Rosenthal's lapse costs Cards chance at win

Club looks to focus on fundamentals with 10-game stretch vs. postseason hopefuls ahead

Rosenthal's lapse costs Cards chance at win

NEW YORK -- A staple of pitchers' fielding practice during the early weeks of Spring Training now haunts the Cardinals in July after an opportunity to push their series finale against the Mets into extra innings Thursday was abruptly thwarted by yet another lapse in fundamentals.

A day after miscommunication between the club's middle infielders caused things to unravel early, Trevor Rosenthal's inability to cover first base cost the Cards a chance at taking three of four at Citi Field. Instead, they head to Chicago on the heels of their third walk-off loss -- this one a 3-2 defeat -- in seven days.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter, and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Pham's hot bat not enough; Cards falter in 9th

Pham's hot bat not enough; Cards falter in 9th

NEW YORK -- As he waited for Trevor Rosenthal to toe the pitching rubber in the ninth inning Thursday at Citi Field, Jose Reyes darted his eyes toward the right side of the infield. He noticed first baseman Matt Carpenter, on Cardinals manager Mike Matheny's orders, backing toward the lip of the right-field grass. Reyes told himself if he hit a ball there, he was going to duck his head and sprint.

When he did, Reyes saw out of the corner of his eye that Rosenthal was hesitating atop the mound, slow to cover first. Reyes ran even faster -- "There's still something there for 34 years old," he grinned afterward -- to beat Rosenthal to the bag, earning a walk-off single in the Mets' 3-2 win over the Cardinals.

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Anthony DiComo has covered the Mets for MLB.com since 2008. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo and Facebook.

Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter, and Facebook.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Leake, Cards not overly alarmed by weakness

St. Louis sticking with rotation plans, with righty's next start slated for Monday

Leake, Cards not overly alarmed by weakness

NEW YORK -- Though Mike Leake acknowledged having trouble maintaining optimal body strength from one start to the next, the Cardinals do not appear concerned enough about the issue to consider an imminent change to their rotation plans.

After lasting a season-short two innings in Wednesday's 7-3 loss to the Mets, Leake said that he is still trying to regain the strength and weight lost last season when he was stricken with shingles. It didn't fully come back over the winter, and the fatigue of the season seems to be further complicating things.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter, and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bader fills out box score for Memphis

Bader fills out box score for Memphis

No organization currently features more high-end talent in its farm system than the White Sox. That was evident on Thursday, as a host of the South Siders' top prospects turned in big performances across three different levels.

Most notably, No. 8 overall prospect Eloy Jimenez (White Sox No. 2) went 3-for-5 with a solo home run and a pair of doubles for Class A Advanced Winston-Salem. It was the 20-year-old outfielder's ninth home run this season and his first as a member of the White Sox after he was acquired from the Cubs last week in the Jose Quintana trade. No. 68 overall prospect Zack Collins (White Sox No. 7) also went deep for Winston-Salem, giving him 13 homers through 82 games in his first full season.

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Mike Rosenbaum is a reporter for MLB.com. Follow him on Twitter at @GoldenSombrero. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Cards rally vs. Mets is too little, too late

Cards rally vs. Mets is too little, too late

NEW YORK -- Offensively dormant for most of the second half, Mets outfielder Yoenis Cespedes woke up on Wednesday -- and displayed every side of who he is -- in a 7-3 win over the Cardinals.

Featuring freshly dyed blue hair, Cespedes drove home runs in each of his first two at-bats, helping the Mets jump all over Cardinals starter Mike Leake for seven runs in two innings. But fans at Citi Field held their collective breath when trainer Ray Ramirez trotted out to check on Cespedes following his second-inning double, fearing another leg injury for the slugger.

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Anthony DiComo has covered the Mets for MLB.com since 2008. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo and Facebook, and listen to his podcast.

Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Read her blog, follow her on Twitter, like her Facebook page and listen to her podcast.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Defensive lapses, weakness hurt Leake vs. NY

Defensive lapses, weakness hurt Leake vs. NY

NEW YORK -- Any chance the Cardinals had to pull back to .500 on Wednesday faded quickly when Mike Leake, left vulnerable by plays not made behind him, could not contain a Mets club that had been hitless with runners in scoring position in the first two games of this series.

By the end of the first inning, the Mets had as many runs (three) off Leake as they had hits against Michael Wacha one night earlier. Things further unraveled in the second, setting the Mets up for a 7-3 victory over the Cardinals, who are left to continue chasing the .500 mark they haven't seen since June 2.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter, and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Diaz working hard to prove himself to Cards

Diaz working hard to prove himself to Cards

MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- While shortstop Paul DeJong continues his run of success with the Cardinals, Aledmys Diaz remains down in Triple-A Memphis, where he's working to prove that he's ready to return to St. Louis and compete with DeJong for starting opportunities.

Diaz was caught off guard by the Cardinals' decision to send him to the Minors on June 28. At the time he was slashing .260/.293/.396, struggling with pitch selection and dealing with nagging injuries to his thumb and ankle. He was also leading the Cardinals in hits, with 71.

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Alaina Getzenberg is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Wacha's 1st career CG a 3-hit shutout of Mets

Wacha's 1st career CG a 3-hit shutout of Mets

NEW YORK -- Still trailing multiple teams in both the National League Central and NL Wild Card races, the Cardinals must play exemplary baseball throughout the season's second half to claw back into the postseason picture. Michael Wacha did more than his share Tuesday night, and the Mets gave him plenty of help, committing three errors in a 5-0 St. Louis win at Citi Field.

A half-dozen defensive misplays, including both of T.J. Rivera's errors, allowed the Cardinals to storm out to a four-run lead in the game's first two innings. Behind Wacha's first career complete game, St. Louis never looked back, cruising to its fourth straight win over New York. In total, the Mets finished with as many errors -- three -- as they had hits against Wacha.

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Anthony DiComo has covered the Mets for MLB.com since 2008. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo and Facebook.

Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter, and Facebook.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Shutout another reminder of Wacha's potential

First career CG part of righty's resurgence; Matheny reflects on 2013 breakout

Shutout another reminder of Wacha's potential

NEW YORK -- The Cardinals have never forgotten what they saw of Michael Wacha when he burst onto the Major League scene in 2013. It's why they've stuck by him through recurring shoulder issues and provided a longer leash than others might have when things started to veer off track earlier this season.

And from that potential has bubbled payoff, none more evident than on Tuesday when Wacha finished off his first career complete game and shutout by striking out Jay Bruce on a 97-mph fastball. The 119th pitch of Wacha's night sealed the Cardinals' 5-0 win over the Mets and reaffirmed why the organization has refused to let any of the setbacks nudge Wacha aside.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Adjustment helps Siegrist's pitching, health

Adjustment helps Siegrist's pitching, health

NEW YORK -- As Kevin Siegrist showcased in his return to the mound on Monday, the Cardinals reliever utilized his time on the disabled list not only to eradicate the neck pain that had been plaguing him for much of the season, but also to correct his eroding mechanics.

It was during a bullpen session last week that Siegrist realized he was closing off his body and inadvertently dropping his arm while going through his delivery. His suspicions were later confirmed went he went inside to review video.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter, and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Gyorko Cards' Heart and Hustle Award winner

Gyorko Cards' Heart and Hustle Award winner

The Major League Baseball Players Alumni Association revealed the 30 preliminary winners of the 2017 Heart and Hustle Award on Tuesday. The honor is the only one voted on by former players, and is bestowed each year upon the active player who most represents a passion for the game of baseball, and best embodies the values, spirit and tradition of the game.

Past winners of the Heart and Hustle Award include David Eckstein (2005), Hall of Famer Craig Biggio (2006, 2007), Grady Sizemore (2008), Albert Pujols (2009), Roy Halladay (2010), Torii Hunter (2011), Mike Trout (2012), Dustin Pedroia (2013), Josh Harrison (2014), Anthony Rizzo (2015) and Todd Frazier (2016).

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Manny Randhawa is a reporter for MLB.com based in Denver. Follow him on Twitter at @MannyOnMLB. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

DeJong hasn't Met a NY pitch he can't slug

Shortstop becomes first Cardinal to HR in 4 straight games vs. Amazins

DeJong hasn't Met a NY pitch he can't slug

NEW YORK -- Paul DeJong's run of franchise firsts continued on Monday with a homer that also helped lift the Cardinals to a 6-3 victory over the Mets.

New York has gotten its fill of the rookie DeJong, who powered his way into the All-Star break at the expense of the Mets less than two weeks ago. DeJong homered in all three of those games, and he extended that streak with a two-run blast that sparked Monday's decisive six-run sixth.

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Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter, and Facebook. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

6 in the Citi: Big inning powers Cards in NY

6 in the Citi: Big inning powers Cards in NY

NEW YORK -- The Cardinals may be struggling to claw their way back into the National League playoff picture, but it hasn't prevented them from keeping the Mets out of it. St. Louis broke out for six runs in the sixth inning Monday, scoring a 6-3 win at Citi Field to further dim New York's postseason hopes.

Tommy Pham broke the game open with a three-run homer off Hansel Robles, Paul DeJong homered for a franchise-record fourth consecutive game against the Mets, and starting pitcher Adam Wainwright added a run-scoring double to tally double-digit RBIs for the second straight year. He is the only active Major League pitcher with multiple 10-plus RBI seasons.

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Anthony DiComo has covered the Mets for MLB.com since 2008. Follow him on Twitter @AnthonyDiComo and Facebook.

Jenifer Langosch has covered the Cardinals for MLB.com since 2012, and previously covered the Pirates from 2007-11. Follow her on Twitter, and Facebook.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Yadi goes yard, but Cards fall in finale

Yadi goes yard, but Cards fall in finale

PITTSBURGH -- For the second time in three days, the Pirates staged a dramatic ninth-inning rally to surge past the Cardinals and keep their hopes of contending alive. Josh Bell began the key National League Central series with a walk-off homer Friday night, and Adam Frazier ended it Sunday afternoon by slapping a walk-off single to cap another comeback and lead the Bucs to a 4-3 win and a series victory over the Cards at PNC Park.

"I'm proud of the men. I'm proud of the fight," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. "Good first series here to start the second half."
 

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Adam Berry has covered the Pirates for MLB.com since 2015. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook and read his blog.

Jonathan Toye is a reporter for MLB.com based in Pittsburgh who covered the Cardinals on Sunday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Perez collects three hits with GCL Cardinals

Perez collects three hits with GCL Cardinals

Reynaldo Lopez piled up the strikeouts as Triple-A Charlotte topped Gwinnett, 5-4, in walk-off fashion on Sunday.

Lopez, the No. 36 overall prospect, fired 66 of his 99 pitches for strikes as he generated a season-high 12 strikeouts and yielded just two hits in seven innings of one-run ball. The White Sox No. 6 prospect was stuck with a no-decision as the Knights bullpen blew a ninth-inning lead, but that doesn't diminish Lopez's brilliant performance.

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William Boor is a reporter for MLBPipeline.com. Follow him on Twitter at @wboor. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Led by Lynn, Cardinals blank Bucs

Led by Lynn, Cardinals blank Bucs

PITTSBURGH -- Right-handed on the mound and left-handed at the plate, Lance Lynn led the Cardinals to a 4-0 win over the Pirates on Saturday night at PNC Park. Lynn fired 6 1/3 scoreless innings for the Cards and laced a double to left-center that began their three-run, two-out rally in the fifth inning.

"I thought [Lynn] was great," Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said. "He was using a great mix of the sinker and the four-seamer."

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Adam Berry has covered the Pirates for MLB.com since 2015. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook and read his blog.

Jonathan Toye is a reporter for MLB.com based in Pittsburgh who covered the Cardinals on Saturday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Phamtastic: Cards OF red-hot at plate

3-for-4 showing leads St. Louis' offense in win vs. Pirates

Phamtastic: Cards OF red-hot at plate

PITTSBURGH -- There's a new fashion trend going around the Cardinals' clubhouse.

Outfielder Tommy Pham introduced his "Tommy Phamtastic" T-shirts about a year ago, but they have recently witnessed a boost in popularity, with several of his teammates wearing the shirt before Saturday's 4-0 win against the Pirates at PNC Park.

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Jonathan Toye is a reporter for MLB.com based in Pittsburgh who covered the Cardinals on Saturday. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Bowman does his best 'pen T-Rex impression

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Bowman does his best 'pen T-Rex impression

At this point, you're probably familiar with everyone's favorite inflatable T-Rex costume. In just the past year or so, it's popped up in the stands in Oakland, on the field in Houston, even terrifying unsuspecting children at Chase Field.

On Friday night, it made an appearance in Pittsburgh for the Pirates' game against the Cardinals, taking a quick lap around the outfield prior to first pitch -- and St. Louis reliever Matt Bowman was so moved that he decided to do his best dinosaur impression.

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Cardinals place Piscotty on 10-day DL

Outfielder's groin strain considered minor; rookie Sierra recalled from Springfield

Cardinals place Piscotty on 10-day DL

PITTSBURGH -- Stephen Piscotty's cleat got caught in the PNC Park turf while he was tracking Josh Harrison's fly ball in the ninth inning of Friday night's 5-2 loss to the Pirates, and that's when he felt the grab in his right leg and groin area. The Cards outfielder left with a right groin strain, and he visited with trainers on Saturday morning. He learned that the injury was minor, but it's still going to take some time to heal.

The Cardinals placed Piscotty on the 10-day disabled list on Saturday, and they recalled Magneuris Sierra from Double-A Springfield as a corresponding move. However, general manager Mike Girsch confirmed that Sierra would not arrive in Pittsburgh in time for St. Louis' game against the Pirates on Saturday.

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Jonathan Toye is a reporter for MLB.com based in Pittsburgh who covered the Cardinals on Saturday. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Molina doesn't break sweat picking off Polanco

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Molina doesn't break sweat picking off Polanco

It seemed like it was going to be just your average, run-of-the-mill play. In the fourth inning of the Pirates' 5-2 win over the Cardinals, Gregory Polanco was on third base as Jordy Mercer drew a walk against Mike Leake.

Then, as Mercer removed his shin guard in the batter's box, catcher Yadier Molina caught everyone by surprise by throwing to third.

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Gyorko's homer not enough in loss to Bucs

Gyorko's homer not enough in loss to Bucs

PITTSBURGH -- After winning five of their last six games before the All-Star break, the Pirates started the second half looking to prove themselves as a National League Central contender before the July 31 non-waiver Trade Deadline. They got off to a good start Friday night, as Josh Bell launched his first career walk-off homer to beat the Cardinals, 5-2, in the second-half opener at PNC Park.

"It's awesome," Bell said. "Especially the ups and downs of that game, it was a bit of a roller coaster ride. Setting that standard."

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Adam Berry has covered the Pirates for MLB.com since 2015. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook and read his blog.

Jonathan Toye is a reporter for MLB.com based in Pittsburgh who covered the Cardinals on Friday.

This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.