Jason Kubel homered twice to help the Diamondbacks to a 6-3 win over the Pirates on Thursday, splitting the series.
Wandy Rodriguez promptly gave up a double to Aaron Hill and Kubel's first home run, to right field, in the first inning to put Arizona up 2-0. The Bucs came back in the bottom of the second to go up 3-2 when Gaby Sanchez and Neil Walker singled, and Michael McKenry brought home Sanchez with a single of his own. Jordy Mercer brought Walker home on a sacrifice fly, and Starling Marte brought McKenry home with a single.
In the sixth, however, the Diamondbacks took a 4-3 lead with a two-run homer by Wil Nieves. Jared Hughes relieved Rodriguez in the seventh and allowed yet another two-run blast by Kubel to put Arizona up 6-3.
Jeff Locke made his 2012 major-league debut in relief of Hughes in the seventh and retired seven straight batters to get through the ninth, keeping the ball down and showing good movement on his pitches. But the Pirates couldn't do anything more against Joe Saunders and Arizona's bullpen.
The Pirates next host the San Diego Padres for a three-game series.
For more on the Pirates, check out Bucs Dugout. For more on the Diamondbacks, there's AZ Snake Pit.