Series: Game 1 of 2

Pittsburgh leads 1-0 (as of 5/22)

Game 1: Friday, May 21
Game 1: Saturday, May 22
Game 2: Sunday, May 23

Brewers 1

(21-20, 10-11 away)

Pirates 3

(19-20, 6-12 home)

    7:05 PM ET, May 22, 2004

    PNC Park, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 

    123456789 R H E
    MIL 010000000 1 7 2
    PIT 01000200 - 3 9 1

    W: J. Fogg (2-4)

    L: B. Sheets (4-3)

    S: J. Mesa (13)


    PITTSBURGH (AP) -- Struggling to score runs, the Pittsburgh Pirates got creative.

    The Pirates broke a tie by scoring twice without a hit in the sixth inning to beat Ben Sheets and the Milwaukee Brewers 3-1.

    "We battled away and got some runs on him. Sometimes you have to bunt people over or steal some bases, whatever," said Rob Mackowiak, who stole second and third base in the sixth for the Pirates, who are 12th in the National League in runs scored.

    "It's not the greatest way to do it, but it got the job done."

    Pittsburgh, a major league-worst 6-12 at home, won consecutive home games for the first time this season and improved to 4-0 against Milwaukee.

    Craig Wilson opened the sixth inning with a walk and was forced out at second on a grounder by Mackowiak, who stole second base and then third as Jason Bay was walked. Bay took second base on a wild pitch, and Abraham Nunez's groundball to second scored Mackowiak.

    "I was just trying to be aggressive," said Mackowiak, who has five stolen bases.

    Sheets then fielded a grounder by Tike Redman and threw the ball over first baseman Lyle Overbay's head and into the stands for an error, scoring Bay.

    "I was just trying to make a play and threw it away," Sheets said. "The leadoff walk ... I walked two guys in that inning, which is very frustrating, but you've just got to try and keep pitching."

    Added Pittsburgh manager Lloyd McClendon: "We'll take them any way we can get them. The stolen bases, you have to pick and choose your spots, and to this point we haven't been very good at it. But that can't deter us from staying aggressive on the basepaths."

    Josh Fogg (2-4) allowed one run into the seventh inning and retired 13 of 14 batters before being lifted after allowing consecutive singles to start the seventh inning.

    "He changed speeds very well, kept us off-balance with his offspeed stuff," Milwaukee manager Ned Yost said.

    Fogg struck out two and walked two while winning his second consecutive start.

    "Against a guy like Sheets, throwing 94 mph with a great curve ball, you knew we were in for a battle," Fogg said. "We did a great job getting on base and stealing some bases. It's the type of game we have to play to get to the bullpen, which has been great all year."

    Sheets was coming off an 18-strikeout performance against Atlanta last Sunday and allowed eight hits and struck out three in seven innings.

    Jose Mesa pitched the ninth for his 13th save in 13 opportunities after John Grabow and Salomon Torres each pitched one inning of relief.

    The Pirates also turned three double plays. After inheriting two runners in the seventh, Grabow got pinch-hitter Brady Clark to ground into a double play and induced Chad Moeller to fly out to right. Torres allowed a leadoff single by pinch-hitter Bill Hall in the eighth but got Scott Podsednik to ground into a double play.

    "My motto lately has been to keep it simple and let my defense do the rest," Torres said. "It's a plus when you've got extra confidence in your defense."

    The Brewers took a 1-0 lead in the second inning when Moeller doubled to left field with two outs, scoring Geoff Jenkins, who singled to lead off the inning. Moeller was hitless in 10 at-bats.

    Pittsburgh tied the game in its half of the second, as Mackowiak and Bay began the inning with singles before Mackowiak scored on Redman's grounder to short. ^Notes:@ The Pirates have turned a double play in 11 consecutive games, turning 17 in that span ... Mackowiak has hit safely in 10 of his last 12 games ... Jason Kendall singled twice and has a 10-game hitting streak ... The Brewers are 9-21 all-time at PNC Park. ... Pittsburgh left nine men on base.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press