The Bottom Line:

— The St. Louis Cardinals (71-58) lost to the Pittsburgh Pirates (69-60) by a score of 9-0 on Tuesday night. The Cardinals have now dropped to their lead to two games ahead of the Los Angeles Dodgers as well as the Pirates

— Pedro Alvarez of the Pirates went 4-for-5 with 4 RBIs and 2 home runs

Jake Westbrook pitched very poorly, giving up seven earned runs over five innings, including 11 hits and 4 walks

Yadier Molina was taken out of tonight’s game after a dangerous collision he had at the plate when Josh Harrison attempted to score in the second inning, but Carlos Beltran threw a bullet to home plate to prevent Harrison from scoring.

You’re not going to win many games when your opponent outhits you 14-5. This game didn’t have much promise from the beginning when Garret Jones hit a sacrifice fly to give the Pirates an early 1-0 lead in the first inning, and Jake Westbrook had absolutely no command on his pitches, which is a shame. I’m not jumping off any bridges, but it is his second consecutive poor outing, and I definitely do have a concern that he has perhaps run out of gas.

Molina is listed as day-to-day after that serious collision, which was the best case scenario after that play. Harrison hit him hard. It was a perfectly legal play, it’s just a shame that Molina had to be on the receiving end of it. Hopefully he can clear his head a bit (no pun intended) and get back behind the plate in just a couple days. On the other hand, what an incredible throw from Carlos Beltran. This guy just continues to have a spectacular season for the Redbirds. In my opinion, he is hands down the most underrated outfielder over the past ten years. Very few people realize that he actually had 5 All-Star appearances when with the Mets and he wasn’t quite as bad as people may have made him out to be. This signing was an absolute steal.

In regards tomorrow, let’s get it done. It was unrealistic to expect a sweep, but now we have to go out and come out of Pittsburgh with a series victory as Joe Kelly will square off against Wandy Rodriguez.

What’s Next: The Cardinals will play the rubber game of their series against the Pittsburgh Pirates on Wednesday night at 6:10 PM CST. The game can be seen on Fox Sports Midwest and all pre and post game information can be found on CardsBlog.