Pirates 15, Brewers 3
Prized Pittsburgh rookie Pedro Alvarez is finally hitting. So are the rest of the Pirates.
Alvarez had two home runs for the second consecutive game and the Pittsburgh Pirates beat the Milwaukee Brewers 15-3 Wednesday night.
The No. 2 overall draft pick from 2008 hit a two-run homer to center in the fifth and a solo shot off the right-field pole in the eighth, giving him seven in his past 14 games.
''Obviously, those first few weeks, it's a million miles an hour, and as time goes on you get used to it a little bit more and more,'' Alvarez said. ''You kind of just play and not try to do too much, and that's what's going on right now.''
Delwyn Young had a home run and a career-high five RBIs to help Pittsburgh win for the fourth time in five games. On Tuesday, Alvarez had a grand slam and a solo homer in the Pirates' 11-9 win over Milwaukee.
''I think we're going to need a little advice on how to pitch to Alvarez,'' Brewers manager Ken Macha said.
The Pirates entered the All-Star break last in the National League in runs, batting average and homers but have scored 47 runs on 55 hits in their past four wins.
''It's a nice change of pace form what we had been going through,'' said rookie second baseman Neil Walker, who had two hits and two RBIs. ''We're really hoping this will carry us through the near and distant future.''
George Kottaras homered for the Brewers, who had a starting pitcher allow more then 10 runs for the third time in four games.
''That's no fun,'' Macha said. ''You want to sit there where I sit? That's no fun.''
Pittsburgh has won four of five and improved its home record to 23-22 - despite being 26 games under .500 overall.
Randy Wolf (7-9) allowed a career-high 12 runs and 13 hits in 5 2-3 innings, and his ERA went from 4.56 to 5.20.
''I didn't do my job today,'' said Wolf, who volunteered to the Brewers coaching staff to stay in the game to save a beleaguered bullpen. ''It's extremely frustrating. I was getting to the point I liked the way I was throwing the ball, and then you have a day like today where you just get killed.''
Zach Duke (4-9) had lost eight of his previous nine decisions but snapped a five-decision home losing streak by allowing three runs, two earned, on six in six-plus innings.
Pittsburgh had scored only 18 total runs in his past eight starts combined.
''Our offense is really fun to watch right now,'' Duke said. ''It was just a matter of keeping it close until we exploded.''
The Pirates, who had a nine-run first inning Tuesday, scored six in the fourth Wednesday and only had two scoreless innings out of eight.
Young - in the lineup only because Andrew McCutchen is out with a shoulder injury - hit a three-run homer in the fourth and had RBI singles in the first and sixth innings.
''Hitting's contagious and hopefully it continues over days and days and weeks and months and keep going from there,'' Young said. ''The energy is good in here right now.
''The first guy gets a hit, you want to move him over and drive him in, the next guy gets a hit and it keeps snowballing ... The hard part is just keeping the momentum.''
The last time the Pirates had a player with five RBIs in two straight games was May 3-4, 1973, when Al Oliver had six May 3 at San Francisco and Rennie Stennett drive in five the next day in San Diego.
Notes: Brewers Hall of Fame radio broadcaster Bob Uecker will be back in the booth in Milwaukee on Friday, just three months after heart surgery. The 75-year-old broadcaster underwent surgery April 30 to replace his aortic valve, aortic root and part of his ascending aorta. ... Pirates C Ryan Doumit left the game after three innings due to feeling light-headed and nauseated. Doumit, replaced by Erik Kratz, missed Tuesday's game after taking a foul ball off his mask during Monday's game. ... Milledge extended his hitting streak to nine games.