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MLB's Pirates scratch out 3-1 win over Red Sox

Pittsburgh Pirates Neil Walker celebrates with his teammates in Pittsburgh
Pittsburgh Pirates Neil Walker celebrates with his teammates in Pittsburgh

PITTSBURGH (Reuters) - The Pittsburgh Pirates used six pitchers to piece together a 3-1 win over the Boston Red Sox at PNC Park Friday.

The Pirates victory was their third straight and improves their overall record to one game above even at 38-37.

The Pirates win also prevented Red Sox starter Jon Lester (9-4) from becoming the first pitcher to reach 10 wins this season.

"They've got a bunch of great pitchers, a bunch of name pitchers who everybody knows," said Pirates starter Paul Maholm. "We've got a lot of guys who lay it on the line every night. We're making names for ourselves."

Maholm (4-8) was unable to pitch around a first-inning lead-off walk to Jacoby Ellsbury, who came in to score on a ground out by Kevin Youkilis.

Maholm pitched out of a bases-loaded jam in the third inning to hold the Red Sox lead to 1-0 and spark the Pirates bats.

"We couldn't push runs across," Boston manager Terry Francona said. "We had opportunities. I thought we worked Maholm, got his pitch count up. But when he had to, he made pitches. We stranded a lot of baserunners."

The Pirates offense broke through in the third inning, loading the bases with no outs, and scoring two runs to grab the lead.

They scored again in the sixth inning, capitalizing on an error by Red Sox third baseman Youkilis.

Neil Walker singled to lead off the inning and advanced to third base on the fielding error and scored on a single by Lyle Overbay.

Maholm pitched over five innings, allowing one run on six hits for the win before turning the ball over to the bullpen that held the Red Sox to three hits the rest of the way.

Lester allowed three runs on eight hits while striking out five in six innings.

(Reporting by Mike Mouat in Windsor, Ontario. Editing by Ian Ransom)

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