Bucs’ latest victory puts them at high point for 2014
Pittsburgh’s Gregory Polanco and Josh Harrison had three hits each and Vance Worley outdueled Ian Kennedy as the Pirates beat the San Diego Padres 2-1 on Friday night.
The win moved the Pirates (62-53) a season-high nine games over .500.
Worley (5-1) struck a season-high seven in seven innings and gave up one run, five hits and a walk.
Kennedy (8-10) was pulled after six innings and allowed two runs — one earned — and seven hits he walked three and struck out five.
Tony Watson preserved the one-run lead with a perfect eighth and Mark Melancon picked up his career-high 21st save by striking out the side in the ninth.
San Diego scored in the first on Everth Cabrera’s leadoff double, a sacrifice and Seth Smith’s sacrifice fly.
Pittsburgh scored twice in the bottom of the inning. Harrison led off with a triple and scored on Polanco’s single. Polanco later scored on Russell Martin’s sacrifice fly.
Pittsburgh loaded the bases with no outs in the third and San Diego did the same in the sixth.
Padres: Right-hander Andrew Cashner (shoulder) was set to make his first rehab start Friday for Single-A Lake Elsinore. He was placed on the 15-day disabled list June 23 with right shoulder soreness. .
Pirates: Center fielder Andrew McCutchen (rib) continues to add to his mobility and resistance exercises, according to manager Clint Hurdle, and is progressing in a “positive fashion.” Hurdle said McCutchen will attempt to take swings. ... Right-hander Gerrit Cole (lat) is slated to make a third rehab start Sunday for Triple-A Indianapolis. He was placed on the 15-day disabled list July 9. ... Second baseman Neil Walker (back) missed his third straight game. Hurdle said Walker “felt better” after taking batting practice.
Padres: Left-hander Eric Stults (4-13, 4.94 ERA) starts in the middle game of the series. Stults has struggled on the road in 2014 with a 0-9 record and 5.78 ERA in 12 starts away from Petco Park. He is 4-4 with a 3.98 ERA in 10 home outings.
Pirates: Left-hander Francisco Liriano (3-7, 3.91 ERA) will face San Diego for the fourth time in his career. Liriano looks to continue his strongest stretch of the season in which he is 2-1 with a 2.17 ERA in four starts since he was removed from the 15-day disabled list on July 13.