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Pirates take series at Miller Park

Jordy Mercer had three hits, Pedro Alvarez had two RBI and Jason Grilli recorded his 20th save as the Pirates finally won a series in Milwaukee with a 5-4 win over the Brewers on Sunday.

The Pittsburgh Pirates are off to their best start since 1990 and they keep on rolling. Sunday afternoon was no different as their weekend series victory over Milwaukee was the Pirates fifth straight and they have now won 13 out of their last 15 games. The last time the pirates started 31-19 they won the division.

Shortstop Jordy Mercer led the way with three hits, Andrew McCutchen had his 15th multi-hit game of the season and Wandy Rodriguez scattered three runs over five innings to pick up his sixth win of the season.

Jason Grilli is now a perfect 20/20 on save opportunities and the Bucs improved to 29-0 when leading after eight innings. This win marks the 16th victory in the month of May, the most the Pirates have ever had in franchise history.

The Pirates got going early once again. While Yovani Gallardo registered the first two outs in the top of the second inning but after an eight pitch at bat to Michael McKenry, he drew the two out walk. Mercer came up to bat next and drove the 1-2 pitch to deep center field and tripled home McKenry for the Bucs to take the 1-0 lead.

Garrett Jones recorded his 26th RBI of the season after a sacrifice fly in the top of the third that scored Starling Marte. Gaby Sanchez stepped up to the plate next and drew a four-pitch walk that moved McCutchen to second base. The hot hitting Pedro Alvarez came up to the plate next and doubled to deep right field scoring both base runners and the Bucs led 4-0 after three.

For the second game in a row the Pirates chased the Brewers’ pitcher after four innings. Gallardo surrendered four runs while striking out seven in four short innings of work.

The Brewers made a comeback in the bottom of the fifth when Ryan Braun came up with the bases loaded. He hammered a 2-0 pitch to left field and cleared the bases for his 12th double of the year and knocked in his team leading 33rd RBI.

The Pirates picked p what turned out to be a valuable insurance run when Marte hit a sacrifice fly that scored McKenry in the top of the sixth.

Carlos Gomez made it interesting for Milwaukee when he sacrificed flied to center and brought home Jeff Bianchi to make the score 5-4.

Grilli came in for the bottom of the ninth and only needed nine pitches to retire the Brewers in order.

The Pirates will send Francisco Liriano to the mound Monday afternoon in Detroit when the Pirates visit the Tigers. Detroit ace Justin Verlander is set to start for the Tigers for a 1:08pm first pitch.

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