August 8, 2012; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates second baseman Neil Walker (18) doubles to drive in two runs against the Arizona Diamondbacks during the fifth inning at PNC Park. The Pittsburgh Pirates won 7-6. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-US PRESSWIRE

Pirates Vs. Padres: Clint Barmes And Neil Walker Spark Pirates To 11-5 Win

The Pirates overcame a 5-0 deficit to defeat the Padres 11-5 on Sunday.

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Padres Vs. Pirates Recap: Clint Barmes' Grand Slam And Neil Walker's Big Day Spark Bucs

The Pittsburgh Pirates were able to salvage a game out of their series with the San Diego Padres, defeating the Friars 11-5 at PNC Park Sunday.

It appeared to be heading for disaster at first, as the Padres jumped out to a 4-0 lead thanks to a number of Pirates miscues. San Diego then took a 5-0 lead in the second.

After cutting the deficit to 5-1, the Pirates broke the game open against former teammate Ross Ohlendorf, exploding for nine runs in the bottom of the fourth, highlighted by a Clint Barmes grand slam that gave the Pirates the lead.

Neil Walker was also a big part of the Pirates' success on Sunday, going 5-for-5 with a home run and a walk. Andrew McCutchen also ended his mini slump with a two-hit game.

Erik Bedard went five innings giving up five runs. Chris Resop, Juan Cruz, Chad Qualls and Joel Hanrahan combined out of the bullpen to shut down the Padres over the last four innings.

For the latest on the Pirates, be sure to stay tuned to SB Nation Pittsburgh and check outBucs Dugout, SB Nation's Pittsburgh Pirates blog.

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Pirates Option Jared Hughes To Triple-A, Welcome Back Juan Cruz From DL

The Pirates have announced that they've reinstated reliever Juan Cruz from this disabled list and optioned reliever Jared Hughes to Triple-A Indianapolis to make room.

Cruz is 1-1 with a 2.61 ERA and 32 strikeouts against 17 walks in 31 innings this season. He landed on the DL in mid-July with shoulder inflamation.

Hughes, meanwhile, was 2-1 with a 2.70 ERA and 32 strikeouts against 18 walks in 56.2 innings pitched. He has been one of the Pirates' most productive relief pitchers this seasons, but those numbers hide recent struggles. In his last four appearances spanning six innings pitched, Hughes has given up six earned runs and two home runs. He gave up three earned runs in one inning against the Diamondbacks on Aug. 7, which led to a 10-4 loss.

This move will give Hughes a chance to work on getting his stuff back into top form. He will likely be one of the top candidates to return to the club when rosters expand of Sept. 1 if not sooner.

For the latest on the Bucs, be sure to stay tuned to SB Nation Pittsburgh and check out Bucs Dugout, SB Nation's Pittsburgh Pirates blog.

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Pirates vs. Padres: Ross Ohlendorf Makes Return To PNC Park

When the Pirates look to avoid a sweep at the hands of the Padres at 1:35 p.m. on Sunday at PNC Park, they'll see a familiar face on the mound. Former Bucs starter Ross Ohlendorf gets the call for San Diego. Pittsburgh will send Erik Bedard to face him.

Acquired by the Pirates in a trade of outfielder Xavier Nady and reliever Damaso Marte that also brought back Jose Tabata, Jeff Karstens and Daniel McCutchen, Ohlendorf has started 34 games at PNC Park. In those starts, he has gone 9-13 with a 3.93 ERA and 130 strikeouts against 67 walks. This season, he is 4-2 overall with a 5.61 ERA, 36 strikeouts and 19 walks.

The Pirates, trying to avoid a fourth-straight loss, released Ohlendorf this past offseason.

For the latest on the Pirates, be sure to stay tuned to SB Nation Pittsburgh and check out Bucs Dugout, SB Nation's Pittsburgh Pirates blog.

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Pirates Vs. Padres: Pittsburgh Falls 5-0 As Jason Marquis Tosses Two-Hitter

It's safe to say: Jason Marquis had the Pirates' number Saturday night. San Diego's starting pitcher surrendered just two hits and no runs over nine innings, leading the Padres to a relatively easy 5-0 win over Pittsburgh at PNC Park. Marquis. who improved to 6-6 on the season, actually took a no-hitter bid into the seventh inning before Travis Snider broke it up with an infield single.

The Pirates, who dropped their third consecutive game, collected another hit in the bottom of the eighth inning when Pedro Alvarez singled to right center field.

Following the loss, Pittsburgh is now stuck 4.5 games behind the Cincinnati Reds in the N.L. Central, though they are tied atop the wild-card standings.

The series finale is scheduled for Sunday at 1:35 p.m. EST.

For the latest on the Bucs, be sure to stay tuned to SB Nation Pittsburgh and check out Bucs Dugout, SB Nation's Pittsburgh Pirates blog.

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Pirates Vs. Padres Score Update: Pittsburgh Trails 3-0 After Four Innings

The Pittsburgh Pirates have struggled, slightly. Through four innings of play at PNC Park, the Bucs have been held hitless by San Diego Padres starting pitcher Jason Marquis, who has been near-perfect with just one walk allowed on 51 pitches.

Meanwhile, the Padres have found success against Pittsburgh starter A.J. Burnett, who has allowed three runs (two earned) over the course of four innings.

San Diego tallied its three runs over the first, third and fourth innings. Chase Headley got the Padres on the scoreboard first with a solo home run, followed by a ground out in the second that scored Everth Cabrera.

San Diego took the first game of the weekend series on Friday night with a 9-8 win over the Pirates, who are amid the NL Wild Card race.

For the latest on the Bucs, be sure to stay tuned to SB Nation Pittsburgh and check out Bucs Dugout, SB Nation's Pittsburgh Pirates blog.

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Pirates vs. Padres: Kevin Correia To Get Another Start

Following James McDonald's implosion Friday night in which he allowed seven earned runs on seven hits and a walk in 4.1 innings and lost a 7-1 lead against the Padres in a 9-8 loss, Pirates manager Clint Hurdle told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review's Karen Price that pitcher Kevin Correia will start this coming Tuesday against the Dodgers at PNC Park.

Correia was bumped from the Bucs' rotation to the bullpen at the end of July when the team traded for Wandy Rodriguez, but he made a spot start this past Wednesday, picking up the win in Pittsburgh's 7-6 victory against Arizona. He'll now get another turn, putting the Pirates on course for what appears to be a six-man rotation.

This could help give McDonald a few extra days to straighten out his stuff as he's been struggling mightily lately, but it also cuts into the number of starts the other guys in the rotation (Rodriguez, Erik Bedard, Jeff Karstens and A.J. Burnett) can make. It will be interesting to see if the Pirates continue to use Correia as a stop gap while McDonald struggles, or if they'll consider replacing McDonald with Correia if the former continues to pitch poorly.

For the latest on the Bucs, be sure to stay tuned to SB Nation Pittsburgh and check out Bucs Dugout, SB Nation's Pittsburgh Pirates blog.

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Padres Vs. Pirates: A.J. Burnett, Bucs Attempt To Bounce Back After Painful Loss

The Pirates will attempt to bounce back from a gut-wrenching 9-8 loss when they face the San Diego Padres again Saturday night at 7:05 p.m.

The Bucs, currently dealing with a series of unreliable performances by one of their better starters in James McDonald, will send their stopper, A.J. Burnett, to the hill. Recently, Burnett has been as great as McDonald has been bad, nearly pitching a complete game against the Reds in his previous start and tossing a one-hitter against the Cubs in the start before that. He has won his last four decisions.

The Padres, meanwhile, will start Jason Marquis. Marquis has struggled this season, with a 5.47 ERA overall and a 5.82 ERA away from the favorable pitching environs in San Diego, but his underlying numbers suggest he's had a lot of bad luck with fly balls turning into home runs. The righty still generally keeps the ball on the ground, but his dwindling velocity should continue to make him very hittable.

For more on the Pirates, check out Bucs Dugout. For more on the Padres, there's Gaslamp Ball.

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Padres Vs. Pirates: James McDonald Gives Up Big Lead In 9-8 Loss

The Pittsburgh Pirates suffered one of their tougher losses of the season on Friday night, falling 9-8 to the Padres to open their weekend series at PNC Park. The Bucs built a six-run lead with a big fourth-inning rally but starter James McDonald's woes continued when he promptly gave it back to the Pads in the next half-inning. With a 7-1 lead, McDonald surrendered six runs in the top of the fifth before he was pulled for Chris Resop. A walk to Cameron Maybin was then followed by five straight San Diego hits. A two-run double by pinch hitter Jesus Guzman and a three-run homer by Chase Headley were the big blows. The Headley homer ended McDonald's night but not before he was credited with seven earned runs.

The big San Diego rally erased the efforts of the Bucs offense, which put a five-spot up in the bottom of the fourth. The Pirates were teeing off on starter Edinson Volquez and Travis Snider caught a pitch and drove it over the right field wall for a three-run homer. That homer was followed by a walk to Andrew McCutchen, ending his night and bringing on Alex Hinshaw. But the reliever quickly yielded a double to Pedro Alvarez that scored two more to put another dent in Volquez's ERA.

With the score tied at 7-7, the Bucs would regain the lead on a Rod Barajas clutch single that scored Garrett Jones from third. It looked like Pittsburgh might rebound from McDonald's implosion and get to the San Diego bullpen. But that threat died and they would not score again. Holding a precarious one-run lead, reliever Tony Watson served one up to Headley that landed over the left-field fence. The decisive blow scored two and handed the Pads the 9-8 win. The Bucs could not rally back over their final three at-bats as the frustrating night came to a close.

A.J. Burnett will now try to pick up the staff and even the series on Saturday against Jason Marquis

For more on the Pirates, check out Bucs Dugout. For more on the Padres, there's Gaslamp Ball.

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Pirates vs. Padres: Clint Barmes, Pedro Alvarez Return To Bucs' Lineup

Shortstop Clint Barmes will be back in the Pirates' lineup on Friday night when the Bucs take on the Padres at PNC Park. Jordy Mercer has manned short for Pittsburgh the past couple of days and provided the decisive home run in a 7-6 win against the Diamondbacks on Thursday night, but an 0-3 performance in a 6-3 loss against Arizona on Thursday afternoon has him back on the Pirates bench.

Pedro Alvarez also returns to the lineup to play third base after getting a day off Thursday. The rest of Pittsburgh's lineup behind starter James McDonald for the first game of a three game set against the Friars looks like this.

For the latest on the Bucs, be sure to stay tuned to SB Nation Pittsburgh and check out Bucs Dugout, SB Nation's Pittsburgh Pirates blog.

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Padres Vs. Pirates: James McDonald Can Get Back On Track Friday

The Pirates have the opportunity to separate themselves from the wild card contenders and catch up to the Reds with a three-game series against the Padres.

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