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(Wednesday, July 2)
Final Score: Pittsburgh 5, Arizona 1
Pittsburgh, PA (SportsNetwork.com) - Gregory Polanco belted a two-run homer in the second inning and Charlie Morton took advantage of the early support by throwing six solid frames in Pittsburgh's 5-1 victory over the Arizona Diamondbacks.
Starling Marte also drove in two runs for the Pirates, who won for the ninth time in their last 11 games. Pittsburgh goes for its first series sweep of the season Thursday night.
Pirates outfielder Andrew McCutchen, who was honored earlier in the day as the National League Player of the Month for June, had two hits and drove in a run in the eighth inning.
Morton (5-9) allowed five hits and a run while logging five strikeouts against three walks. The right-hander won his third consecutive start at PNC Park.
"He stayed focused and kept making pitches," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. "The command was a little bit of a struggle, but he found what worked. He just moved the ball around with what he had tonight."
Diamondbacks rookie Chase Anderson (5-4) was charged with eight hits and three runs over 3 2/3 innings and lost his fourth consecutive start.
"He really didn't have fastball command at all," Diamondbacks manager Kirk Gibson said. "His change-up was his best pitch, but you have to command the count better than that."
Paul Goldschmidt went 3-for-4 and scored Arizona's only run.
The Pirates won Tuesday's contest, 3-2, by scoring three times in the ninth inning -- two of which came on a Marte double -- but got enough offense early on Wednesday.
Polanco doubled to right field in the bottom of the first and went to third when Gerardo Parra bobbled the ball on the warning track. Marte followed with a groundout to shortstop for the 1-0 edge.
After Morton grounded into a double play in the second, Polanco homered to right field with Jordy Mercer aboard.
Morton did his part to help build Pittsburgh's 3-0 lead, escaping jams with men on first and second in the opening two innings.
McCutchen tried to make a sliding catch on a fly off the bat of Aaron Hill in the third, but the ball caromed off his glove. The hit scored Goldschmidt, who singled two batters earlier.
Arizona's Randall Delgado fanned Neil Walker to leave the bases full in the bottom of the fourth and the Pirates stranded runners at the corners in the fifth.
The hosts tacked on two runs in the eighth, however, with Marte plating Travis Snider with the first on a double to right.
McCutchen, who briefly walked near the dugout after fouling a ball off his left foot, then singled to left-center field to account for the final margin. The ball dropped between Ender Inciarte and David Peralta after a miscommunication between the two outfielders.
Polanco, who was recalled from Triple-A Indianapolis on June 10, has reached base safely in 19 of his first 21 big league games ... Goldschmidt has reached base safely in 23 straight games ... The Pirates, who are a season-high four games over .500 (44-40), have won their last four series and eight of 10 ... Mercer had three of Pittsburgh's 12 hits.
07/02 22:42:40 ET
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