The Pirates started the week on Wednesday with a 3-2 win over the Atlanta Braves, the Bucs' third straight one-run game, and avoided a sweep in Atlanta. Starter Charlie Morton's debut with the Pirates ended after just one inning due to a tight hamstring, and Jeff Karstens (3-4) came in and took the win in relief of the man who replaced him in the starting rotation. Some good hitting and aggressive baserunning helped seal the deal, and Matt Capps notched his 14th save of the season.
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With Thursday night's 3-1 win over the Braves, the Pirates got a good performance from Paul Maholm, whose only offensive backing for most of the game was a solo homer by Delwyn Young. The Bucs rallied for two runs in the top of the ninth when Andy LaRoche poked a two-run single. The bullpen got a break as Maholm pitched seven good innings and struck out eight, and Steven Jackson (2-1) took the win. Matt Capps finished it for save No. 15.
The Pirates opened a three-game set on Friday with the Detroit Tigers with a 3-1 loss. Ian Snell (1-7) was tagged with the loss and gave up two hits to Tigers starter Rick Porcello, batting because the game was in a National League park. The Bucs' sole run came in the sixth inning, but they struggled through other rallies that went nowhere.
The bats came out again for the Pirates on Saturday in their 9-3 win over the Tigers. Adam LaRoche's solo shot sparked a four-run second inning and a Freddy Sanchez grand slam plated four more runs. Zach Duke (7-4) scattered six hit across eight innings and gave up three runs, two on homers.
On Sunday, the Bucs came out swinging again to beat the Tigers 6-3. The Pirates jumped out to a 3-0 lead in the first and added three in the fourth. Ross Ohlendorf (6-5) pitched six good innings and Matt Capps closed the door with his 16th save of the season.
The Pirates came back from their off day on Monday with an 8-2 loss to the Minnesota Twins. Paul Maholm threw two wild pitches and scattered 14 hits. Nyjer Morgan provided some punch with a two-run homer in the third inning, but despite 11 hits, that was the Bucs' only scoring. Maholm (4-3) took the loss while giving up eight earned runs, walking one and striking out four.
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