A lot of things went well. The offense got some runs against Ryan Vogelsong, with four RBI coming with two out. Charlie Morton pitched well and avoided giving up a big hit. Plus he pitched deep, giving the weary bullpen a needed break.
Pittsburgh came out with both fists flying against Vogelsong. Garrett Jones and Neil Walker hit back-to-back one out doubles to make it 1-0. With two gone, Ludwick singled in Walker to give the Pirates an early cushion.
San Francisco threatened in the second with Aubrey Huff and Nate Schierholtz starting off the inning with consecutive singles. Neither man scored as Morton got the next three hitters.
Pittsburgh added another tally in the third. Andrew McCutchen and Jones both singles. Ludwick was given a free pass with two gone and Vogelsong walked Pedro Alvarez to force in a run.
The Giants once again put two on in the fourth. But Morton got an inning ending double play off the bat of Aaron Rowand.
Pittsburgh put two more on the board in the fifth. Jones singled leading off. He stole second and with two outs, Ludwick singled him in. Alvarez and Brandon Wood followed with singles to score Ludwick with the fifth and final run of the game.
In the sixth Morton would strand Schierholtz at second after he doubled with two out. Mark DeRosa reached on an error from Wood in the eighth and advanced to third where he stayed. Jose Veras pitched a scoreless ninth to close it out.
Morton allowed five singles and a double in eight innings. He struck out four and walked three. Vogelsong gave up all five Pirate runs in five innings. He struck out eight but gave up nine hits and two walks.
Jones had four hits. McCutchen and Ludwick each had two.
Bucs whiffed 13 times.
Wood’s eighth inning error.
Bucs ran themselves out of a rally in the ninth. McCutchen doubled to lead off the inning. Jones singled him to third. Neil Walker’s bouncer was fielded cleanly at second by Mike Fontenot who flipped to Orlando Cabrera covering second for the force. McCutchen tried to score but was thrown out at the plate for a 4-6-2 double play. Walker was then caught stealing to end the inning.
Morton improves to 2-3 against San Francisco. Vogelsong drops to 1-1 against his old team.
Vogelsong’s eight whiffs match a season high. This was just the third time in 19 starts in 2011 that Vogelsong allowed more than three runs.
This was the third time this year and third time in his career that Morton has pitched eight innings. His other two efforts were complete games against Cincinnati earlier this year.
This was the first four hit game of 2011 for Jones and the third of his career. He has four multiple hit games in August after collecting only three in July. He is hitting .461 in the month.