EditorsNote: rewords fifth graf
Right-hander Nick Kingham pitched six strong innings and drove in two runs Sunday as the Pittsburgh Pirates broke a five-game losing streak with a 4-1 win over the visiting Philadelphia Phillies.
Starling Marte had two hits, and Josh Harrison and Josh Bell each drove in a run for the Pirates.
Nick Williams hit a solo homer for Philadelphia, which had won six straight.
Pittsburgh rode a three-run fourth inning to win the battle of rookie starters.
Kingham (3-4), making his eighth big league start, gave up Williams’ homer for his only run allowed. That was among four hits he gave up while striking out five and walking one. He had been 0-4 in five starts since winning his first two.
Pittsburgh was outscored 51-15 during its losing streak, but relievers Edgar Santana, Kyle Crick and Felipe Vazquez (18th save) held the Phillies hitless on Sunday and struck out seven over the final three innings to back Kingham.
Right-hander Drew Anderson (0-1), called up from Triple-A Lehigh Valley on Sunday to make first major league start after making two relief appearances for Philadelphia last August, gave up four runs and eight hits in five innings, with four strikeouts and one walk.
Pittsburgh took a 1-0 lead in the second. Francisco Cervelli, just activated from the concussion disabled list, hit a one-out double off the wall in right-center. He moved to third when Austin Meadows reached on Anderson’s fielding error on a chopper, and he scored on Harrison’s single to center.
The Phillies tied it in the fourth when Williams hit his 11th homer, a 422-foot shot to right-center.
Kingham’s two-run double highlighted the Pirates’ three-run fourth. Meadows hit a one-out base hit to center and moved to third on Jordy Mercer’s two-out single. Mercer stole second, and Kingham followed with his first major league hit, to left, for a 3-1 lead.
Bell followed with a ground-rule double to the corner in right to drive in Kingham for a 4-1 Pittsburgh lead.
—Field Level Media