PHILADELPHIA (KDKA/AP) — The Pirates dropped the first game of their three-game weekend road series against the Philadelphia Phillies 10-3 Friday night.
Charlie Morton (8-6, 4.04 ERA) lasted just four innings, allowing eight runs on nine hits.
In the first inning, the Phillies had picked up three runs when Chase Utley, Ryan Howard and Raul Ibanez each had an RBI.
They added five more runs in the second after Neil Walker’s fielding error, Utley’s three-run homer and Morton walked Wilson Valdez with the bases loaded.
In the seventh, Jimmy Rollins hit a two-run homer to make it 10-0.
Morton’s counterpart, Roy Halladay (12-4, 2.44 ERA), held the Pirates to one hit and struck out five over seven shutout innings.
The Pirates generated some offense in the eighth inning with Pedro Ciriaco’s two-RBI double. Then, Xavier Paul had an RBI single to make it 10-3.
The Phillies, who have the best record in baseball, are on the brink of acquiring Houston All-Star outfielder Hunter Pence. Pence would give the Phillies the right-handed bat they need and marks the second straight day an NL division leader has swung a deal to bolster their lineup. The defending World Series champion San Francisco Giants acquired Carlos Beltran from the Mets on Thursday.
The Giants just won two of three from the Phillies and held them to two runs scored in the last two games.
The Phillies, trying to clinch their fifth straight NL East title, clearly needed a big bat in the postseason.