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James McDonald, Pirates Shut Down Braves, 5-0

Sports Network | September 8, 2010


Pittsburgh, PA (Sports Network) - Delwyn Young capped a five-run seventh with a two-run homer and James McDonald tossed seven scoreless innings, as the Pittsburgh Pirates shut down the Atlanta Braves, 5-0, in the second test of a three-game series at PNC Park.

Atlanta, which has lost five of six, fell a half-game behind first place Philadelphia in the NL East standings. The Braves had been in sole possession of first since May 31. Atlanta currently holds the wild card spot, a game ahead of San Francisco.

Ronny Cedeno hit a two-run triple for the Pirates, who won 3-1 in the opener of this series. Pedro Alvarez drove in the other run.

"Tim Hudson is a great competitor, and he's a great pitcher. We just always try to grind it out and play until the end," Alvarez said.

McDonald (3-5) gave up just five hits in the process of putting the brakes on a three-start slide. The right-hander also struck out three and walked three.

Tim Hudson (15-7) allowed four runs on six hits over 6 1/3 innings to suffer the loss. He allowed an earned run versus the Pirates for the first time since August 23, 2006. Hudson fell to 5-4 lifetime against Pittsburgh.

Pittsburgh broke a scoreless tie with a five-run seventh. Garrett Jones hit a one-out double to center and scored on Alvarez's two-bagger. Ryan Doumit was intentionally walked to put men on first and second before Cedeno cleared the bases with a triple to right-center field, chasing Hudson from the game.

"Things were going pretty good, and you're out there in that seventh inning and a couple of pitches essentially cost us the game," Hudson said.

Peter Moylan took over on the mound and struck out Chris Snyder. Eric O'Flaherty was called in from the bullpen to face pinch-hitter Young, who hit his two-run homer to left. Andrew McCutchen flied out to end the frame.

Evan Meek and Joel Hanrahan tossed a scoreless eighth and ninth, respectively, to seal the victory.

The Braves failed to score after putting men on the corners in the top of the fifth. Melky Cabrera doubled down the left-field line with one out. After Alex Gonzalez flied out, Rick Ankiel was intentionally walked. Hudson, though, popped out to end the threat.

Hudson, meanwhile, was perfect on the mound through four frames. Jones changed that in the home fifth with a leadoff single. Alvarez, though, grounded into a double play. Doumit singled before Cedeno grounded out.

Atlanta wasted another great scoring chance in the sixth. Jason Heyward singled, Martin Prado doubled, andBrian McCann was intentionally walked to load the bases with one out. Derrek Lee then grounded into an inning-ending double play.

There was a 43-minute rain delay prior to the start of the ninth inning...Atlanta leads the season series with Pittsburgh, 5-3...Pirates second baseman Neil Walker extended his hitting streak to 14 games...The Braves recalled pitchers Craig Kimbrel and Cristhian Martinez from Triple-A Gwinnett...The Pirates recalled pitchers Brad Lincoln and Justin Thomas, infielder Pedro Ciriaco, and catcher Jason Jaramillo from Triple-A Indianapolis. The club also selected the contracts of outfielders Alex Presley and Brandon Moss, and pitchers Brian Bass and Steven Jackson from Indianapolis.

Photographs by dizfunk used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.