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Kansas City at Pittsburgh

Scoreboard
Kansas City (31-41)020000001370
Pittsburgh (34-39) «00211100x561

Pirates 5, Royals 3

CBSSports.com wire reports
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PITTSBURGH -- Waived three times in the offseason, Virgil Vasquez couldn't help but have fun in his first major league start in 22 months.

The 27-year-old right-hander went six innings for his first major league win and the Pittsburgh Pirates got home runs from three unlikely power sources in a 5-3 victory over the Kansas City Royals on Friday night.

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Vasquez (1-0), recalled by the Pirates after Thursday's game to make his first start since Aug. 31, 2007, allowed two runs and four hits while striking out seven.

"It was so much fun," said Vasquez, who spent last season with Detroit's Triple-A affiliate before being claimed -- and later left exposed on waivers -- by Boston and San Diego then finally sticking with the Pirates in a three-month span this winter.

"It's great to get an another opportunity up here after being with three teams in the offseason," he said. "It was nice to know three different teams liked me and wanted to have me on a roster, and I ended up here, and I'm really happy with this clubhouse and the front office and teammates and coaches."

Vasquez worked quickly and threw strikes -- 66 among 99 pitches. Only once this season in 14 Triple-A starts had he struck out at least seven.

"I don't want to say he's a strikeout pitcher," Pirates manager John Russell said, "but he was getting ahead of hitters, and when you're ahead of hitters, he has enough he can strike them out."

Nyjer Morgan, Jason Jaramillo and Jack Wilson homered for Pittsburgh, which has won three straight since snapping a five-game losing streak.

Mark Teahen hit his ninth homer and Miguel Olivo went 2 for 4 with an RBI for the Royals, who have lost seven of nine.

Matt Capps converted his 11th consecutive save opportunity and 17th overall with a shaky ninth. After getting two quick outs, Capps allowed Teahen's solo homer, then committed a fielding error and gave up a single to Olivo.

But pinch-hitter Mike Jacobs struck out looking with the tying runs aboard.

Morgan, Jaramillo and Wilson had combined for five home runs in 579 at-bats this season heading into Friday's game for a punchless offense that ranked 26th in the majors in homers.

"I guess it was a day for the little guys," Morgan said.

Morgan's homer was his second in nine games after going 145 games in his career with only one. It came off Royals starter Gil Meche with Andrew McCutchen aboard and one out in the third.

The next inning Jaramillo hit his third homer into the same section in right field.

"I certainly feel good at the plate right now," said Jaramillo, who homered Wednesday. "I feel comfortable, and I know a lot of the guys do."

Wilson added a solo shot to left in the sixth, his third of the season and second in seven games.

"Everybody can hit homers -- it's just sometimes you don't have to swing for it," Wilson said. "For guys like us, it's more like a line drive that you get under it a little bit. It's nice to be able to get power from unexpected sources."

Pittsburgh's speed contributed to taking a 4-2 lead in the fifth. McCutchen led off with a walk and stole second. Morgan then reached on a bunt single, with McCutchen going to third. Freddy Sanchez followed with a sacrifice fly to deep center.

Meche (4-7) was charged with four runs, five hits and three walks in five innings. He allowed nine runs in 3 1/3 innings in his most recent start.

"I didn't feel real smooth out there," Meche said. "Tonight was terrible. I just didn't feel great, didn't have good arm speed, didn't locate. It was pretty much the same story as the last start."

Notes

Despite scoring two runs, McCutchen's hitting streak ended at 13 games -- the longest by a rookie this season. McCutchen had hit safely in all but two of his previous 20 games in the majors. ... Pittsburgh has won eight of 10 and nine of 12 at home. ... Vasquez was 0-1 in five games, three starts, with Detroit in 2007.
 
Copyright 2014 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
 
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Players of the Game
Pittsburgh

N. Morgan
AB 4
R 1
H 2
HR 1
RBI 2
Kansas City

M. Teahen
AB 3
R 2
H 1
HR 1
RBI 1
 
Kansas City Royals
David DeJesus, LF4000010 .242
Mitch Maier, CF3000020 .233
   a- Brayan Pena, PH1010000 .333
    Jamey Wright, P0000000 .000
Billy Butler, 1B3010110 .283
Jose Guillen, RF4010012 .257
Mark Teahen, 3B3211111 .285
Alberto Callaspo, 2B4111000 .300
Miguel Olivo, C4021000 .257
Tony Pena Jr., SS3000010 .088
   b- Mike Jacobs, PH1000012 .226
Gil Meche, P2000010 .000
    Juan Cruz, P0000000 .000
   c- Willie Bloomquist, PH-CF1000000 .273
Totals3337329  
a-singled for Maier in the 8th
b-struck out for Pena in the 9th
c-grounded out for Cruz in the 8th
Batting
2B - Jose Guillen (8, Vasquez), Alberto Callaspo (19, Vasquez), Miguel Olivo (9, Vasquez)
HR - Mark Teahen (9, Capps)
RBI - Mark Teahen (27), Alberto Callaspo (27), Miguel Olivo (30)
2-OUT RBI - Mark Teahen (12)
Team LOB - 5
Kansas City Royals
Gil Meche (L,4-7) 5544332 4.27
Juan Cruz 2111021 5.23
Jamey Wright 1000020 4.28
HBP - McCutchen (by Gil Meche)
Pitches-Strikes - Gil Meche 84-47, Juan Cruz 27-18, Jamey Wright 11-7
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Gil Meche 6-5, Jamey Wright 1-0
Batters Faced - Gil Meche 23, Juan Cruz 7, Jamey Wright 3
Pittsburgh Pirates
Andrew McCutchen, CF2200110 .323
Nyjer Morgan, LF4122000 .267
Freddy Sanchez, 2B2011100 .314
Adam LaRoche, 1B4010012 .264
Brandon Moss, RF4000012 .265
Andy LaRoche, 3B3000110 .269
Jason Jaramillo, C3111010 .277
Jack Wilson, SS3111001 .285
Virgil Vasquez, P2000020 .000
   a- Eric Hinske, PH1000000 .267
    Steven Jackson, P0000000 .000
    Sean Burnett, P0000000 .000
    Matt Capps, P0000000 .000
Totals2856537  
a-flied out for Vasquez in the 6th
Batting
HR - Nyjer Morgan (2, Meche), Jason Jaramillo (3, Meche), Jack Wilson (3, Cruz)
SF - Freddy Sanchez (3)
RBI - Nyjer Morgan 2 (27), Freddy Sanchez (31), Jason Jaramillo (18), Jack Wilson (23)
2-OUT RBI - Jack Wilson (10)
SB - Andrew McCutchen (4, 2nd base off Meche/Olivo)
CS - Nyjer Morgan (8, 2nd base by Meche/Olivo)
Team LOB - 4
Fielding
Outfield Assists - Brandon Moss 1
DP - J. Wilson-LaRoche-F. Sanchez
E - Matt Capps (1, Missed catch of throw)
Pittsburgh Pirates
Virgil Vasquez (W,1-0) 6422270 3.00
Steven Jackson (H,2) 1.1000010 5.40
Sean Burnett (H,6) 0.2100000 3.13
Matt Capps (S,17) 1211011 4.91
Pitches-Strikes - Virgil Vasquez 99-66, Steven Jackson 13-9, Sean Burnett 9-5, Matt Capps 20-13
Ground Balls-Fly Balls - Virgil Vasquez 6-4, Steven Jackson 2-1, Matt Capps 3-0
Batters Faced - Virgil Vasquez 23, Steven Jackson 4, Sean Burnett 2, Matt Capps 6
Game Information
Attendance - 18458
Game Time - 2:26
Temperature - 81
Umpires - Home - Scott Barry, First Base - Phil Cuzzi, Second Base - Tom Hallion, Third Base - Jerry Crawford