The Cardinals scored 12 runs in the first three innings Wednesday against the Pirates and never looked back.
Carlos Beltran led the way with a pair of three run homers -- one in the first and another in the third -- as the Birds punished Pittsburgh starter A.J. Burnett with 12 runs on 12 hits and a walk. Jon Jay and Matt Carpenter each had three hits to help the St. Louis attack while Rafael Furcal and Matt Holliday each had a pair to propel the Birds to a 12-3 victory.
The first six St. Louis players reached base. Furcal and Jay singled to make it first and second with no outs before a Holliday safety got the Cardinals on the board 1-0. Beltran then blasted a ball to left field to make it 4-0.
The Birds weren't willing to rest on their lead. In the second, the Cardinals responded to a Pittsburgh run in the top of the inning when Furcal again led off with a single and stole second base before Jay reached when he was hit by a pitch. Holliday singled in another run to make the score 5-1 and Beltran collected a base hit to right field to make it 6-1. David Freese hit into a double play. But Holliday scored on the play to make the score 7-1.
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In the third, Matt Carpenter singled and scored on a Daniel Descalso triple. After Lynn grounded out, Furcal hit a sacrifice fly to make the score 9-1. Jay singled, Holliday walked and then Beltran hit his second three-run blast to make it 12-1.
Lance Lynn started the game for the Cardinals and was his usual dominant self. He allowed two earned runs on a three hits and a walk over 6 2/3 innings while striking out six to improve to 4-0 on the season with a 1.60 ERA.
Mitchell Boggs allowed one run in relief to account for the final score.
Cardinals Star of the Game: Beltran was 4-for-5 with a pair of homers and seven RBIs -- otherwise known as two more than Albert Pujols has had all season.
Cardinals Play of the Game: Beltran's first homer in the first inning which put the Cardinals out front 4-0.
Lowlight: In a 12-3 blowout, the Pirates skipper and starting catcher got tossed for arguing balls and strikes. Yeah, it was the umpire's fault.