Game Report: Pirates 4, Cardinals 3

For the seventh time this season, the Cardinals had a chance Wednesday night to move to a season-high 10 games over .500. They are now 0-7 in those games.

Jung Ho Kang broke a 3-3 tie with a home run off Alex Reyes in the eighth inning to give the Pirates the win in Pittsburgh.

The Cardinals also saw their streak of hitting at least one home run come to an end after 25 consecutive games, which tied the longest streak in NL history but fell two games shy of the major-league record.

The loss also dropped the Cardinals into a tie with the Mets for the second wild-card position. They have 24 games remaining in the regular season.

Here is how the game broke down:


At the plate:
The Cardinals stranded six runners In scoring position, scoring single runs in the first, second and sixth innings as they went 3-for-14 with runners in scoring position … Brandon Moss left three of those runners there as he went 0-for-4 and finished the road trip 0-for-26, the longest hitless streak of his career … Tommy Pham popped out as a pinch-hitter leading off the ninth to extend his hitless streak to a career-high 20 consecutive at-bats … The Cardinals’ RBIs came on a single by Matt Adams in the first, a double by Jhonny Peralta in the second and a single by Randal Grichuk in the sixth.

On the mound: Mike Leake made his first start since his bout with shingles and pitched 4 1/3 innings, allowing three runs on nine hits … Reyes relieved with a runner on second in the fifth and got out of the inning and allowed only two hits over the final 3 2/3 innings, but one was the home run to Kang leading off the eighth, the first home run Reyes has allowed in the major leagues. Reyes did not walk a batter and struck out six.

Key stat:
Kang has hit three homers in the last two games and has five this season against the Cardinals, the most they have allowed to a single player. Kang also had a pair of singles and is now 13-for-36 this season in 12 games against the Cardinals (eight starts) with 11 RBIs. He now has seven homers in 88 at-bats against the Cardinals in his two years in the majors.

Of note: Aledmys Diaz played a complete game at shortstop for Double A Springfield on Wednesday night, going 0-for-4 with a sacrifice fly but had only three fielding chances … Jedd Gyorko did not start for the first time since Aug. 10. He had started 45 of the Cardinals last 47 games dating back to July 17 … Matt Holliday got the medical OK to begin more baseball-related activities, and the Cardinals hope he will be able to get back in the lineup before the end of the regular season … Two of the Cardinals’ short-season affiliates, the Johnson City Cardinals and Gulf Coast League Cardinals, both won their league championships with wins on Wednesday. It’s the fourth Appalachian League title in seven years for Johnson City and the first championship for the GCL Cardinals.

Looking ahead: After finishing the road trip with a 5-4 record, the Cardinals return home to host the Brewers in a four-game series beginning with a 6:15 p.m game Thursday night at Busch Stadium. Jaime Garcia will get the start against Junior Guerra.