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National League Game Summary - Pittsburgh at St. Louis



(Wednesday, October 9th)

Final Score: St. Louis 6, Pittsburgh 1

St. Louis, MO (SportsNetwork.com) - David Freese conjured up his postseason heroics from two years ago and Adam Wainwright went the distance to send the St. Louis Cardinals back to the NLCS for the third straight year.

Freese, the MVP of the 2011 World Series, belted an early two-run homer and Matt Adams added another one late as the Cardinals rolled to a 6-1 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates in a decisive Game 5 of the NLDS.

St. Louis won the last two games of the series on the backs of strong starting pitching. Michael Wacha took a no-hitter into the eighth inning of Monday's tight 2-1 victory, and Wainwright (2-0) followed the rookie's stellar performance with one of his own, scattering eight hits -- all singles -- with a walk and six strikeouts.

"The last two games they kept us off the plate. We had two runs in 18 innings...so we tip our hat to the Cardinals," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said.

The NL Central champs, who are 8-1 in postseason elimination games over the past three years, will have home-field advantage over the Los Angeles Dodgers in the NLCS, with Game 1 scheduled for Friday.

The Pirates, looking for their first postseason series win 1979, tabbed rookie Gerrit Cole as their starter rather than Game 1 loser A.J. Burnett. Cole (1-1) threw five solid innings, but was done in by Freese's second-inning homer.

Jon Jay kept the frame going by working an eight-pitch walk after being down in the count. Cole was also ahead of Freese but missed his spot on a 1-2 slider, and Freese sent the mistake into the bullpen beyond the left-field wall for his seventh career postseason homer.

"It was a great feeling," Freese said of his homer. "We were fortunate to get on the board early."

Cole solved Freese in the fourth inning by catching him looking at strike three to strand runners on the corners, this after Adams was tagged out in a rundown between third and home.

Needing an offensive spark since they mustered just two baserunners through five innings, the Pirates pinch-hit for Cole after Clint Barmes led off the sixth with a base hit.

Garrett Jones, however, flew out harmlessly coming off the bench, and Starling Marte bounced into a routine double play to end the inning.

St. Louis tacked on against Pittsburgh's bullpen in the bottom half. Matt Holliday reached on a one-out single and moved to second when Yadier Molina worked a two-out walk. Jay followed with a dribbler up the middle that got through the infield, and Holliday scored without a play at the plate.

Freese struck out again to leave two on, and the Pirates finally got to Wainwright in the next half-inning -- albeit with three consecutive two-out singles that never left the infield.

Justin Morneau started the string by narrowly beating Matt Carpenter's throw from second, and Marlon Byrd legged out a ground ball to short after Pete Kozma opted against an easier force out at second.

Pedro Alvarez benefited from a generous bounce to keep his RBI streak intact. His chopper down the first-base line hit the bag and arced over Adams' head. Even though Carpenter backed up the play, Alvarez easily made it to first and Morneau raced around for Pittsburgh's first run.

Wainwright shook off the tough break and retired Russell Martin on a fielder's choice, then erased a one-out single in the eighth by getting Marte to line into a twin-killing.

Adams gave the Cardinals some breathing room in their half of the eighth. After Holliday reached on a single, Adams crushed a no-doubter into the right- field seats off Mark Melancon to give the hosts a 5-1 cushion.

Kozma delivered another insurance run with an RBI single, and Wainwright survived a pair of two-out base hits in the ninth by striking out Alvarez to finish off his gem.

"To pitch a game like that is one of highlights of my baseball life, no doubt," Wainwright said. "These are the kind of moments starting pitchers live for."

Game Notes

St. Louis will make its 12th appearance in the NLCS ... This was Wainwright's first complete game in the playoffs; he led the majors with five during the regular season ... Wainwright has won his last six decisions and improved to 3-0 with a 1.26 ERA over his last four playoff starts in St. Louis ... Alvarez is the first player in MLB history to have an RBI in each of his first six playoff games ... Marte and Neil Walker, the first two hitters in Pittsburgh's lineup, went a combined 1-for-38 in the series after going 0-for-7 Wednesday ... Pittsburgh rookie starting pitchers had been 6-0 in postseason play.

10/09 23:42:39 ET

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Scoreboard
Local
Final
NOR 1
DUR 2
 
1:05pm Today
NOR
DUR
 
3:30pm Today
MIA
CHA
Final
WAS 3
STL 4
Final
CLE 0
TOR 5
Final
DET 5
ANA 2
Final
BOS 4
BAL 2
Final
KAN 5
MIN 4
Final
CHC 8
CIN 4
Final
OAK 4
HOU 3
Final
PIT 7
MIL 8
Final
NYM 5
ATL 7
Final
TAM 16
NYY 1
Final
MIA 7
SEA 0
Final
TEX 6
CWS 3
Final
LOS 8
ARI 6
Final
COL 3
PHI 1
Final
SDP 3
SFG 1
1:05pm Today
CLE
TOR
 
1:08pm Today
DET
ANA
 
1:10pm Today
NYM
ATL
 
1:10pm Today
MIA
SEA
 
1:35pm Today
PIT
MIL
 
1:35pm Today
WAS
STL
 
1:40pm Today
TAM
NYY
 
2:10pm Today
KAN
MIN
 
2:20pm Today
CHC
CIN
 
3:05pm Today
TEX
CWS
 
4:05pm Today
OAK
HOU
 
4:10pm Today
LOS
ARI
 
4:10pm Today
COL
PHI
 
4:10pm Today
SDP
SFG
 
7:05pm Tonight
BOS
BAL
 
Final
TOR 87
BRK 94
Final
LAC 105
GSW 109
Final
IND 93
ATL 101
Final
OKC 100
MEM 86
1:00pm Today
SAN
DAL
3:30pm Today
MIA
CHA
7:00pm Tonight
CHI
WAS
9:30pm Tonight
HOU
POR
Final
STL 4
CHI 3
Final
PIT 3
CLB 4
Final
COL 4
MIN 2
12:00pm Today
NYR
PHI
3:00pm Today
BOS
DET
7:00pm Tonight
MON
TAM
10:00pm Tonight
SJS
LOS
Final
NOR 1
DUR 2
 
1:05pm Today
NOR
DUR