ST. LOUIS (AP) - To Andrew McCutchen, it was just another home run - one of 21 that he has hit this season. However, his 454-foot shot in the seventh inning wasn’t just ordinary.
The Pittsburgh outfielder’s homer was the second-longest by a visiting player in the history of current Busch Stadium, which opened in 2006.
“It was a fastball and I hit it,” McCutchen said after the Pirates’ 5-4 loss to the St. Louis Cardinals on Sunday. “I guess I was strong enough to do it.”
The drive landed in the first row of Big Mac Land in left field, a favorite spot of former St. Louis slugger Mark McGwire.
“It sure got out quickly,” Pittsburgh infielder Josh Harrison said.
The drive tied for the fifth-longest in stadium history, but wasn’t enough to keep the Pirates from losing their second in a row.
Matt Holliday hit the go-ahead RBI single in the Cardinals’ three-run seventh inning to lead the Cardinals to the come-from-behind win.
St. Louis moved into sole possession of first place in the NL Central for the first time this season with its third straight win. The Cardinals are one game ahead of Milwaukee, which lost to the Chicago Cubs. Pittsburgh is three games back.
Kolten Wong started the three-run rally with a two-run, pinch-hit homer to tie the score 4-all.
Holliday, who is 7 for 11 with three homers and 12 RBI in his last three games, then followed with a single to left to bring in Jon Jay with the winning run.
“I’m OK with him going off all month long,” St. Louis starting pitcher Lance Lynn said. “This (three) game stretch, I’d like for it to be like to a 28 to 45-game stretch. If he can keep doing what he’s doing, that’s a big boost.”
Holliday has driven in three runs or more in each of his last three games, the first St. Louis player to do so since Scott Rolen did it Aug. 11-13, 2002.
“He loves to come up with the big hit and he got it again,” St. Louis manager Mike Matheny said.
Pittsburgh starter Gerrit Cole (7-5), who gave up a two-run double to Holliday in third, was also impressed.
“The guy is just unbelievable,” Cole said. “He’s probably the strongest human being in the world. He just continues to get it done when he needs to get it done.”