Morton pitches 7 strong innings, drives in go-ahead run

Staff Writer

SAN DIEGO (AP) — Charlie Morton pitched seven strong innings and combined with two relievers on a four-hitter, and drove in the go-ahead run in the sixth inning to lead the Pittsburgh Pirates to a 5-2 victory against the San Diego Padres on Saturday night.

Morton (2-0) retired his last 11 batters in his second start of the season. He won his season debut 4-2 against Marlins on Monday after starting the year on the disabled list recovering from right hip surgery. He held San Diego to two runs, one earned, and three hits while striking out two and walking one.

After allowing an unearned run in the fourth, he got Will Middlebrooks to hit into a double play, and then retired in the Padres in order in the fifth through seventh innings.

Mark Melancon pitched the ninth for his 13th save in 14 chances.

The Pirates won for the eighth time in nine games.