Bill Almon had three hits, including an RBI double in a six-run second inning, as the Pirates hit eight doubles in a 11-2 defeat of the Montreal Expos last night in Pittsburgh.
Marvell Wynne had two hits and three RBI as the Pirates ended a four-game losing streak. Winner Rick Reuschel (4-1) pitched his first complete game.
The top three teams in the National League East -- Montreal, St. Louis and New York -- lost yesterday, while the bottom three -- Chicago, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh -- won. That left the Expos ahead by a half-game over the Cardinals and by 1 1/2 over the Mets.
The Pirates got to Jack O'Connor, making his first National League start, for three runs in the first inning before chasing him with six runs in the second.
In the first, Almon singled, Johnny Ray doubled and Jim Morrison reached on third baseman Vance Law's error before George Hendrick's sacrifice fly and Jason Thompson's two-run single.
In the second, Sammy Khalifa and Almon doubled around Reuschel's sacrifice bunt, and Ray hit a sacrifice fly. Hendrick doubled with two out and Thompson walked before Tony Pena's RBI double. Wynne chased O'Connor (0-1) with a two-run single that made it 9-0.
"I just couldn't do anything," said O'Connor. "They hit everything I threw -- the good pitches, the bad pitches, it didn't matter. They hit 'em."
Montreal, saving its bullpen, used reserve catcher Sal Butera to pitch the eighth. Hendrick grounded out and Thompson flied out. Butera threw a fast ball past Pena, then lofted an arching blooper pitch that Pena ignored before grounding out on the next pitch.
"I throughly enjoyed myself," Butera said. "I was just hoping they wouldn't hit the ball up the middle."