The Pirates scored the first win in a pivotal series Friday against the St. Louis Cardinals led by a player who essentially was benched earlier this week.

Garrett Jones drove in four runs and hit his 100th career homer powering the Pirates past the Cardinals 5-0 at PNC Park.

Francisco Liriano helped pitching eight shutout innings to pick up his 15th win this season a career high.

With the win the Pirates (78-56) pulled into a tie with the Cardinals (78-56) for first place in the National League Central Division. Both teams have 28 games remaining including five against one another.

"We beat the Cardinals in the first game of a series. It always feels special" said catcher Russell Martin who hit the second of back-to-back homers with Jones in the fourth.

It was Jones' first start since Sunday as manager Clint Hurdle wanted the first baseman to take a break to work through some struggles.

"We're not unplugging anybody but we thought a couple three days down could help" Hurdle said.
For one night anyway it did.

Jones went 3 for 4 driving in runs in the first fourth and fifth.

All but two of Jones' 100 career homers have come with the Pirates. But only 13 have come in a disappointing season for the first baseman who typically platoons first base with Gaby Sanchez.