Pirates take down AstrosJul 5, 2011 - 12:33 AM
Maholm (5-9) lasted six innings, allowing three runs -- one earned -- on five hits and three walks while striking out three.
D'Arnaud went 2-for-5 and crossed the plate with the eventual game-winner in the fifth on a Neil Walker single. Alex Presley added an RBI and finished 3- for-4 with a triple.
Joel Hanrahan threw a perfect ninth to record his 25th consecutive save this season.
Brett Myers (3-8) surrendered a career-high 13 hits and allowed five runs -- four earned -- over six innings.
"They were swinging. They were aggressive," said Myers. "Normally I like teams like that but, you know, they were fouling a lot of stuff off and making me work deep in the count and were able to see a bunch of pitches."
Carlos Lee had a pair of RBI for the Astros, who have dropped 12 of their last 14
In the first, consecutive one-out singles by Jeff Keppinger and Hunter Pence placed runners at the corners, before Lee's sac fly gave Houston a 1-0 lead.
The advantage was fleeting, as Lyle Overbay, Josh Harrison and Michael McKenry ripped successive singles in the second to tie the game.
After a Maholm strikeout, Presley singled to right, but Carlos Corporan caught Pence's strong throw and aptly blocked the plate to retire the sliding Harrison.
Shaken up on the play, Harrison was later removed due to dizziness, but not before he made a pair of costly gaffes the next half-inning.
After a Keppinger one-out single, Harrison misplayed a Pence grounder, allowing both runners to reach safely. Lee then placed an RBI single up the middle.
Another error by Harrison, this time an errant throw to first on a Matt Downs grounder, allowed Pence to cross the plate, giving the Astros a 3-1 lead.
In the home half of the third, d'Arnaud and Andrew McCutchen sandwiched a pair of doubles around a Garrett Jones groundout to cut the deficit to one.
Two batters later, Overbay singled up the middle to even things up.
D'Arnaud got things going in the fifth, reaching with a leadoff single, then advancing to second and third on Jones' single and McCtuchen's fly out.
Walker's single to right plated d'Arnaud, giving the Pirates their first lead of the game.
They extended that lead in the sixth as Brandon Wood, who reached on a Downs error, crossed the plate courtesy of Presley's triple.
"I think we've all done a good job of coming out here and playing confidently," said Walker.
The Astros had threatened significantly a half-inning earlier, placing runners on second and third with one down, but Downs was cut down trying to score on Brett Myers' grounder to d'Arnaud and Michael Bourn went down on strikes.
Hanrahan will represent the Pirates in the All-Star Game, while the Pence made the NL roster as a reserve...The Pirates have won five straight over the Astros...Entering Monday, the Pirates were 1.5 games out of first place in the NL central, marking the closest they have been to first this late in the season since July 21, 1997...Hanrahan tied Mike Williams' club record for most saves before the All-Star break and bested Mike Gonzalez's Pirates record for most consecutive saves without a blown save.
- HOUSTON: 3
Jul 4 4:21 PM
- Alex Presley tripled to center scored Brandon Wood. Runner on third with two outs and Chase d`Arnaud due up.
Astros 3, Pirates 5 Bot 6, 2 OutsJul 4 3:36 PM
- Lyle Overbay grounded into a double play, short to second to first to end the inning.
Astros 3, Pirates 4 End 5Jul 4 3:13 PM
- Josh Harrison flied out to right to end the inning.
Astros 3, Pirates 3 End 3Jul 4 2:43 PM
- Andrew McCutchen doubled to center scored Chase d`Arnaud. Runner on second with one out and Neil Walker due up.
Astros 3, Pirates 2 Bot 3, 1 OutJul 4 2:37 PM
- Matt Downs reached on Josh Harrison's throwing error scored Hunter Pence. On the play Downs advances to second on Lyle Overbay's throwing error. On the play, Carlos Lee advances to third. Runners on second and third with two outs and Clint Barmes due up.
Astros 3, Pirates 1 Top 3, 2 OutsJul 4 2:32 PM
- Carlos Lee singled to center scored Jeff Keppinger. On the play, Hunter Pence advances to third. Runners on first and third with one out and Jason Michaels due up.
Astros 2, Pirates 1 Top 3, 1 OutJul 4 2:24 PM
- Michael McKenry singled to left scored Lyle Overbay. On the play, Josh Harrison advances to second. Runners on first and second with one out and Paul Maholm due up.
Astros 1, Pirates 1 Bot 2, 1 OutJul 4 2:12 PM
- Carlos Lee sacrifice fly out to center scored Jeff Keppinger. Runner on first with two outs and Jason Michaels due up.
Astros 1, Pirates 0 Top 1, 2 OutsJul 4 1:40 PM
- HOUSTON: 0
Top 1, 0 Outs
Jul 4 1:36 PM
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