Pedro Alvarez, Andrew McCutchen and Gaby Sanchez each clubbed home runs to lift the Pittsburgh Pirates to a 6-1 victory over the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim on Saturday.
Alvarez continued to swing a hot bat, homering for a third straight day and for the fourth time during his seven-game hitting streak.
Pittsburgh has taken the first two of this three-game interleague set. Alvarez and Sanchez each had two hits and the Pirates totaled 10 as a team to provide starter Francisco Liriano (6-3) with plenty of support.
The veteran lefty tossed 6 2/3 frames of one-run ball, scattering seven hits and three walks while striking out six. He was supplied with three early runs and successfully kept the Angels from getting into any rhythm offensively.
Mike Trout drove in Los Angeles' only run with a base hit in the seventh. The Angels had won six of eight prior to dropping the first two games of this series.
Jerome Williams (5-3) was ripped up for five runs -- four earned -- on eight hits and two walks over six innings.
Alvarez's homer with one away in the second inning began a three-run frame for Pittsburgh. Sanchez and Neil Walker followed with singles and Travis Snider hit into a force out at second to put runners at the corners.
Williams then served up an RBI base hit to Jordy Mercer and an ensuing fielding error by his third baseman Alberto Callaspo allowed the Pirates to load the bases. Russell Martin then earned a five-pitch walk to make it 3-0.
Walker doubled to center to start the fourth and Pittsburgh took a 4-0 lead on Snider's ground ball base hit up the middle.
Liriano gave up his third straight hit in the fourth on a single from Erick Aybar, but Starling Marte kept the Angels off the board when he fielded the hit into left and fired home to nab Howie Kendrick at the plate.
The Angels finally got on the board in the seventh when J.B. Shuck reached with a ground-rule double and scored on Trout's single to center, but by then it was 5-1.
McCutchen had homered in the fifth to provide Pittsburgh's with its fifth run and Gaby Sanchez answered the Angels' score with a two-out solo shot in the eighth.
Trout and Albert Pujols both came to the plate in the ninth with a pair of runners on base, but Pittsburgh reliever Justin Wilson forced them both into outs to end the game.
The Pirates are 13-4 when Alvarez homers and 22-7 when he drive in at least one run ... The Angels are 1-19 when scoring two runs or fewer ... Los Angeles outfielder Josh Hamilton sat for a second straight game with a sore right wrist ... The Angels were 3-for-10 with RISP and left 11 men on base.