for this game

Pirates edge Nationals for third straight win

May 24, 2014 - 4:24 AM Pittsburgh, PA ( - Pedro Alvarez's two-run homer helped power the Pittsburgh Pirates to a 4-3 victory over the Washington Nationals in the second tilt of a four-game set at PNC Park.

Ike Davis added two hits and scored a pair of runs, while Starling Marte chipped in an RBI for the Pirates, winners of three straight.

Charlie Morton (1-6) allowed just one run on five hits and four walks over 5 2/3 innings to pick up his first win since Sept. 2 at Milwaukee.

"He (Morton) just went out there and used what he had. It was a good effort by Charlie," said Pirates manager Clint Hurdle, who secured the 800th win of his career.

After coming off the 15-day disabled list prior to the game, Jason Grilli stranded a leadoff walk in the ninth to secure his fifth save of the season.

Jordan Zimmermann (3-2) yielded four runs on seven hits and two walks while fanning four in six innings to absorb the loss on his 28th birthday.

Greg Dobbs and Scott Hairston each recorded an RBI for Washington, which has scored just five runs during its current three-game skid.

"They scored one more than we did so that's all we can look at right now other than trying to get them tomorrow," Washington manager Matt Williams said.

The Pirates jumped on the board in the second inning. Davis beat out a ground ball that sent second baseman Anthony Rendon into right field and Russell Martin doubled to left to put runners in scoring position.

Davis scored on a groundout by Marte and Martin crossed the plate on a Zimmermann wild pitch.

Morton escaped a jam in the third with runners on the corners and one out by getting Wilson Ramos to hit into a 6-4-3 double play.

Alvarez crushed a one-out, two-run homer to straightaway center to increase the lead to 4-0 in the fourth. Davis led off the inning with a single.

The Nats loaded the bases with two singles and a hit batter to start the sixth. Dobbs' plated Jayson Werth with a sac fly to left field. Jared Hughes took the mound after Morton struck out Zach Walters. Hughes got Nate McLouth to ground out in two pitches to keep the cushion at 4-1.

Ian Desmond drew a one-out walk off Justin Wilson in the eighth and pinch- hitter Kevin Frandsen and Walters followed with singles to load the bases. Hairston's pinch-hit sac fly off Bryan Morris cut the deficit to one.

A passed ball scored Frandsen, which the Pirates challenged to see if he was safe and the call was upheld to help pull the Nats 4-3. Pinch-hitter Danny Espinosa was then hit by a pitch, but Morris was able to get Denard Span to hit a groundout back to him to keep the one-run advantage.

With a runner on first and two outs in the ninth, Josh Harrison made a leaping catch at the wall on a Desmond liner to end the game.

Game Notes

Prior to the game, the Pirates optioned catcher Tony Sanchez to Triple-A Indianapolis ... Washington went 1-for-9 with runners in scoring position, while Pittsburgh finished 1-for-6 with RISP ... It was Martin's first game back since being reinstated from the 15-day disabled list on Thursday. He served his one-game suspension Thursday for his actions in the April 20 incident with the Brewers ... Neil Walker has started each of the first 47 games at second base; the only Pirate to start all 47 games this season ... The Nats are just 4-23 when limited to three runs or less.