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GRAND SLAM! Pirates Beat Rangers with Marcano Slam, Ortiz 1st MLB Win

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Luis Ortiz, Pittsburgh Pirates

PITTSBURGH — Tucupita Marcano’s grand slam gave Luis Ortiz more than he needed to earn his first major league win as the Pittsburgh Pirates defeated the Texas Rangers 6-4 Monday night at PNC Park.

After a Ke’Bryan Hayes walk loaded the bases with two outs in the eighth inning, Marcano hit a 419-foot grand slam to center field to blow the game open for the Pirates (25-22), who extended their lead to 6-1. 

The grand slam was the second homer for Marcano this season and the first grand slam of his career. 

The long ball was more than enough for Ortiz (1-2) to earn his first-career big league win after a dazzling start on the mound against a tough Rangers’ lineup.

After not completing six innings to date in his big league career, Ortiz held the Rangers (29-20) to just two runs across 7.2 innings on the mound.

His 7.2 innings were the most by a Pirates rookie pitcher since Trevor Williams threw 8.0 innings on Aug. 23, 2017 vs. Dodgers.

A Marcus Semien RBI-single in the eighth knocked Ortiz out of the game, but Colin Holderman entered and struck out Corey Seager to preserve Ortiz’s line.

Ortiz allowed five hits, walked two batters and punched out four. 59 of his 93 pitches went for strikes.

Carlos Santana put the Pirates ahead in the bottom of the seventh inning with an RBI-single to right field. Bryan Reynolds was initially called out on the play, but manager Derek Shelton successfully challenged and the call was overturned. 

Marcano’s grand slam came two batters later.

Connor Joe drove in Hayes from third after Hayes opened up the bottom of the second with a double to put the Pirates up 1-0. 

After striking out in his first two plate appearances, Seager tied the game at 1-all with a sacrifice fly to left field in the sixth, plating Leody Taveras.

Josh Jung hit a two-run home run in the top of the ninth off of David Bednar, but Bednar was able to prevent further damage and keep the Pirates’ win in tact.

With a base hit to right field to begin the Pirates’ night with the bats, Andrew McCutchen became the 12th Pirates’ player in franchise history to reach 1,500 career hits with the team.

McCutchen, Marcano and Reynolds all had two-hit performances.

The Pirates will look to win their first series in the month of May on Tuesday night. Rich Hill (4-3, 3.80 ERA) will look to build off his best start of the season on the mound for Pittsburgh. Right-hander Nathan Eovaldi (5-2, 2.83 ERA) will get the mound for Texas. First pitch: 6:35.

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