Morse Leads Nationals Past Pirates 6-3
PITTSBURGH (KDKA/AP) — Kevin Corriea had been the Pirates best starting pitcher so far in 2011, but Sunday afternoon, he wasn’t at his best, and the rest of the team did not bail him out offensively as the Washington Nationals came out on top 6-3.
Correia (3-2) failed in his attempt at becoming the first Pirates pitcher to win four games in the month of April since Jeff Suppan in 2003. He fell to 0-2 at home by allowing five runs on 11 hits and a walk in 4 2-3 innings with two strikeouts.
Jason Marquis continued Washington’s season-long streak of starters going at least five innings by allowing three runs on eight hits and two walks in six innings.
Marquis, who had two strikeouts, has more wins against the Pirates (12) than any other team. He has won nine of his past 11 decisions against Pittsburgh.
The Pirates’ Neil Walker did have three hits and an RBI.
For the Nationals, Mike Morse had a three-run homer among his three-hits and former Pirate Adam LaRoche also homered.
The Pirates have scored more runs in the first than any other inning this season. After scoring five in their win over Washington Saturday, it was Walker who gave the Bucs a 1-0 lead Sunday with a one-out single that drove in Andrew McCutchen.
Morse’s drive was his first of the season and came during the Nationals’ four-run third inning.
Morse broke out last season with 15 home runs in only 266 at-bats but had only one extra-base hit through 17 games this season. He took a 2-2 pitch from Correia to left with Rick Ankiel and Werth aboard.
The two-out clout came after it appeared as if Correia would escape a bases loaded, nobody out jam by allowing only one run on a grounder.
The Pirates though scored twice in the fourth on Chris Snyder’s sacrifice fly and Ronny Cedeno’s RBI double.
But LaRoche led off the fifth with his third homer, to right, to make it 5-3.
In the eighth, the Nationals added a run on Laynce Nix’s RBI double off of Mike Crotta.
Nationals right fielder Jayson Werth threw out McCutchen at home plate to end the game. McCutchen threw his helmet to the ground in disgust and manager Clint Hurdle argued with umpire Kerwin Danley.
Drew Storen earned his third save – all coming in his last three appearances.