PITTSBURGH (KDKA/AP) — The Pirates’ offense roared to life, picking up 14 hits in a 5-3 win over the Houston Astros in front of a sellout home crowd Monday.
The win puts the Pirates (44-41) three games over .500.
Pirates lefty Paul Maholm (5-9, 3.08 ERA) allowed three runs on five hits, in addition to striking out three over six innings.
The Astros got just one hit on Daniel McCutchen. Jose Veras allowed no hits or runs and Joel Hanrahan earned his 25th save during a perfect ninth inning.
Rookie Alex Presley had three of Pittsburgh’s 14 hits. Chase d’Arnaud, Garrett Jones, Neil Walker and Lyle Overbay each had two hits.
Jeff Keppinger had two hits and scored two runs and Hunter Pence went 2 for 3 to extend his hitting streak to nine games for the Astros, who have lost four consecutive, nine of 10 and 12 of 14.
They have the majors’ worst record – a distinction that last season belonged to the Pirates. But Pittsburgh is 14 games better than it was at this point of 2010. The Pirates have won three of four and nine of 13.
With the game tied at 3 in the fifth, Walker singled to right, scoring d’Arnaud. Presley’s two-out triple in the sixth scored Brandon Wood to make it 5-3.
Those runs came after the Pirates had rallied to tie Houston twice after trailing 1-0 and 3-1.
Houston’s two-run third came the result of three Pittsburgh errors, but the Pirates tied it the following half-inning when d’Arnaud doubled and scored on Andrew McCutchen’s double. Overbay then drove McCutchen in with a single.
Brett Myers allowed five runs – four earned – with no walks and one strikeout in six innings.