PITTSBURGH (CBSMiami/AP) – It seems that with the Miami Marlins no matter what may change from one game to another, the end results are staying the same.
Jung Ho Kang capped a late rally with a two-run single and the Pittsburgh Pirates ran their winning streak to six games with a 5-2 win over the Marlins on Wednesday.
Josh Harrison and Pedro Alvarez added RBI singles during Pittsburgh’s five-run seventh as the Pirates won for the first time this season when trailing after six innings. Gerrit Cole (7-2) struck out seven in seven efficient innings. Mark Melancon worked the ninth for his 12th save as Pittsburgh completed an eight-game homestand with a flourish.
The Pirates spent five innings getting handcuffed by Miami starter Brad Hand but jumped on relievers Mike Dunn and Sam Dyson (2-2).
Justin Bour and Christian Yelich hit solo homers for the Marlins, who fell to 2-8 under manager Dan Jennings. Miami had been 12-0 when leading after six innings but were swept for the sixth time this season when Pittsburgh got going.
Hand, pressed into his first start of the season when injuries forced Henderson Alvarez and Mat Latos to the disabled list, kept the Pirates off balance. Pittsburgh managed just four hits with Hand on the mound and Miami appeared to be in decent shape when Bour and Yelich both sent Cole offerings into the seats in right field to stake the Marlins to a 2-0 lead.
It quickly unraveled in the seventh. Less than 24 hours after scoring all of their runs with two outs in a 5-1 victory, Pittsburgh again found a way to deliver a series of clutch hits.
Dunn retired the first two batters he faced in the seventh before Chris Stewart singled. Pinch-hitter Jose Tabata then smacked a grounder to second base that deflected off Dee Gordon’s glove and into shallow center field.
Dyson took over for Dunn and promptly gave up a single to Harrison that brought Pittsburgh to 2-1. Pinch-hitter Alvarez beat the shift by slashing a single through the left side of the infield to tie the game. Andrew McCutchen walked to load the bases.
Usually free-swinging Starling Marte – who leads the Pirates in strikeouts – then worked the count full against Dyson and held off on a breaking ball that dipped out of the strike zone to force home Harrison and give the Pirates the lead. Kang lined a single over Gordon’s glove to push Pittsburgh’s advantage to 5-2.
The rally pushed Cole into a tie with Bartolo Colon and Michael Wacha for the National League lead in victories.
Marlins: RHP Jose Fernandez was scheduled to throw a simulated game on Wednesday as he continues his rehab from Tommy John surgery in 2014. … RHP Jarred Cosart was scheduled to throw off the mound on Wednesday as he begins to come back from a bout with vertigo.
Marlins: Miami is off Thursday and will spend the weekend in New York to face the Mets. New York swept a four-game series from the Marlins at Citi Field in April. Dan Haren (4-2, 3.09) starts for Miami. Haren pitched six shutout innings in his previous start against Baltimore.
Pirates: Pittsburgh begins a 10-game road trip on Thursday night when it begins a four-game set in San Diego. A.J. Burnett (4-1, 1.37) will look for his fifth straight win. The 38-year-old leads the majors in ERA and gave up one run in seven innings, striking out 10 last Saturday against the Mets. Burnett is just 3-7 with a 4.23 ERA in 11 games against the Padres.
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