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LF Starling Marte struggled throughout the postseason, going 3-for-24 (.125) in six games and 0-for-4 in Game 5 against the Cardinals. Marte also hit into double plays that ended the sixth and eighth innings Wednesday.
2B Neil Walker had a series to forget, going 0-for-19 after collecting two hits in the Pirates' wild-card win over Cincinnati. One scout said Walker was taking the best swings of anyone in the Pittsburgh lineup during the regular season's homestretch, but he couldn't find any traction in the NL Division Series, and it hampered the offense greatly.
RHP Gerrit Cole did his part over five innings, giving up just three hits and two runs. His only bad pitch was a hanging slider that Cardinals 3B David Freese lined over the left field wall for a two-run homer that put St. Louis ahead for good. Going into the game, opponents had just one hit off Cole's slider in 232 swings. "The young man took another step forward," manager Clint Hurdle said of Cole. "I thought he pitched a very professional game."
3B Pedro Alvarez carried Pittsburgh offensively, becoming the first player in major league history to knock in runs in each of his first six postseason games. Alvarez's run-scoring infield hit in the seventh inning Wednesday gave him seven RBIs in the playoffs, and he hit .300 in the postseason after batting .233 in the regular season.
RHP Mark Melancon had a great regular season but ended with a performance he'd just as soon forget, allowing three eighth-inning runs that ended Pittsburgh's realistic hopes of a ninth-inning rally. Melancon was the closer for most of the season's second half but struggled for the last part of September.