PITTSBURGH - JULY 24: Xavier Paul #38 of the Pittsburgh Pirates is congratulated by teammate Matt Diaz #23 after scoring the game winning run in the 10th inning against the St Louis Cardinals during the game on July 24, 2011 at PNC Park in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

Cardinals Vs. Pirates: Xavier Paul Helps Seal Extra-Inning Win As Bucs Now Tied For First

Xavier Paul's path to a 10th-inning winning run began with an infield single.

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Brewers Lose To Giants As Pirates Sneak Back Into First

The Milwaukee Brewers lost 2-1 to the San Francisco Giants on Sunday, propelling the Pirates back into a three-way tie for third place in the NL Central with the Brewers and Cardinals. That didn’t seem likely after the Pirates’ recent three-game losing streak, but here we are.

Ryan Braun scored the Brewers’ only run with a homer in the first inning. The Giants tied the game in the third with an RBI single by newcomer Jeff Keppinger, then went ahead with a sacrifice fly by Mike Fontenot in the fourth. Madison Bumgarner went 7.2 innings for the Giants, striking out eight.

The Pirates begin a very tough road series against the Atlanta Braves Monday, while the Cardinals begin a homer series against NL Central doormat Houston. The Brewers have the day off, then begin a series against a bad Cubs team. So the Pirates will need to be at their best in the next few days.


Cardinals Vs. Pirates: Xavier Paul Helps Bucs Seal Crucial Extra-Inning Win

Xavier Paul ran his way to a crucial Pirates victory in the 10th inning of the Bucs' series finale against the St. Louis Cardinals.

With the score tied 3-3, Paul reached base on an infield single, stole second, advanced to third on an error, and came home on a sacrifice fly by Chase D'Arnaud.

The victory pulled the Pirates even with the Cardinals for second place in the NL Central. Both teams are a half game behind the Milwaukee Brewers.

Charlie Morton walked five batters in 5.1 innings, but managed to escape with only three runs allowed. He got help from new Pirate Jason Grilli, who took over with two men on in the sixth and registered a strikeout and a groundout to leave them stranded. The Bucs' relievers managed 4.2 scoreless innings in total. 

Ronny Cedeno and Eric Fryer each had two hits for the Pirates. 

The Bucs begin another tough series, in Atlanta, on Monday.

For more on the Pirates, check out Bucs Dugout.

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