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Pirates' Alvarez named NL Player of the Week

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Monday, June 24, 2013, 5:09 p.m.

Pirates third baseman Pedro Alvarez was named the National League Player of the Week on Monday after one of the better stretches of his career.

In seven games last week, Alvarez produced an NL-best 10 RBI along with four home runs — second most in the league during the week — and a .414 batting average.

Alvarez drove in all five of the Pirates' runs in a victory at Cincinnati on Thursday. He hit his 19th home run of the season in the first inning of Sunday's game, and his leadoff double in the 10th began a four-run rally to key a 10-9 sweep-clinching win over the Angles. Alvarez helped the Pirates post a 5-2 record for the week.

Alvarez has a 1.132 OPS in June, a career best.

Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said Alvarez is more patient at the plate, which is key to his turnaround after early-season struggles.

Alvarez said his torrid stretch is related to his improved mental approach.

“A lot of times it's not something mechanical,” he said in Cincinnati. “Mechanics help, but a lot of the times it's just things are approach-driven. You can get in your own head sometimes.”

Travis Sawchik is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. Reach him at or via Twitter @Sawchik_Trib.

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