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|Pujols Powers Cards Past Pirates
|PITTSBURGH (AP) -- Albert Pujols went 4 for 5 and homered for the second straight game to lead the St. Louis Cardinals past the Pittsburgh Pirates 6-4 Friday.
David Freese broke out of an extended slump with two hits, including a two-run homer, as St. Louis pulled into a virtual tie with the Pirates in the crowded NL Central standings.
Chris Carpenter (6-7) gave up four runs in eight innings to win his fourth straight decision for the Cardinals. Fernando Salas pitched the ninth inning to collect his 18th save.
Pittsburgh's Paul Maholm (6-10) had won four straight games at PNC Park, but a sloppy first inning sent him to his first home loss in two months.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)