Alvarez blasted No. 18 on the season in Colorado on Wednesday.

Entering game action on Wednesday, Andrew McCutchen (.531 avg, 1.594 OPS) and Neil Walker (.490 avg, 1.357 OPS) were ranked No. 1 and No. 2 in the Majors in the month of July in average and OPS. But despite those two combining to go 0-for-8 on the day, Pittsburgh was still able to pull together a huge win in Colorado on Wednesday to take their 17th series win.

Perhaps another sign that things really are different this year.

When the 2012 season started, the strength of the club offensively was expected to be with small ball and speed. They would have to use their speedy players to their advantage, swipe bases, and timely sac bunts in order to plate runs. What many didn't expect them to do is hit the long ball, but that...

To celebrate the upcoming MLB draft, we’re offering a big subscription discount of 18% off from now through the draft , so that you can follow all of our updates and coverage.To get the discount, use the code MLBDRAFT for an Annual subscription, or MLBDRAFT3 for a Top Prospect Plan.

To continue reading the rest of this article, subscribe to Pirates Prospects. Subscribers get access to every article on the site, along with all of our exclusive live coverage of the Pirates' minor league system, all for a very low monthly or yearly rate.

If you're already a member, you can log in below. If you think you're receiving this message in error, please e-mail