Final

Series: Game 2 of 3

Series tied 1-1 (as of 6/16)

Game 1: Tuesday, June 15
Anaheim4Final
Pittsburgh2
Game 2: Wednesday, June 16
Anaheim3Final
Pittsburgh5
Game 3: Thursday, June 17
Anaheim2Final
Pittsburgh5

Angels 3

(36-28, 16-14 away)

Pirates 5

(25-36, 10-19 home)

    7:05 PM ET, June 16, 2004

    PNC Park, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 

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    ANA 000110010 3 10 0
    PIT 00005000 - 5 9 1

    W: J. Fogg (4-5)

    L: J. Lackey (4-8)

    S: J. Mesa (15)

    Infield single precedes three-run HR

    PITTSBURGH (AP) -- For the first time in more than a week, the Pittsburgh Pirates went home from the ballpark looking forward to reading a newspaper or watching the TV highlight shows.

    Daryle Ward's three-run homer finished off Pittsburgh's five-run fifth inning, and the Pirates avoided their longest losing streak in 36 years by beating the Anaheim Angels 5-3 Wednesday night.

    Despite falling behind 2-0, the Pirates averted their first 10-game losing streak since July 6-15, 1968, or two ballparks ago for them. They also ended a 14-game interleague losing streak against AL West clubs and a six-game home skid, handing the Angels their eighth loss in 11 games.

    Jose Mesa struck out Chone Figgins and Adam Kennedy with runners at second and third to end it.

    "It's good to not have to look in the paper and see we've lost eight or nine in a row," manager Lloyd McClendon said. "It feels good. I might even get some sleep tonight."

    Before the game, McClendon told his players during a brief meeting there was nothing wrong with their attitude or their work ethic during the nine-game losing streak, only with the results they were getting.

    "The biggest thing for us has been to forget (each loss) and go on and try to win the next day," Jack Wilson said.

    Ward has been one of the few pleasant surprises in a mostly bad season in which the Pirates have gone from a game over .500 on May 29 to 11 games under in just more than two weeks.

    Ward hit only .183 with no homers in 109 at-bats for the Dodgers last season before signing with Pittsburgh as a minor league free agent. He is on pace to best his career high of 20 homers with Houston in 2000, and his 28 RBI are third on the club, even though he spent the first five weeks of the season in the minors.

    "That felt good, to get a win and put a smile on your face," Ward said. "It just hasn't been happening for us, and today it finally happened. We had to keep it going and keep playing hard, we just needed to win to get some confidence. ... Now, you don't mind going home and watching TV."

    Josh Fogg (4-5) became the first Pirates starting pitcher to win since he beat the Cubs on May 29 -- a 15-game stretch during which Pittsburgh starters went 0-8 -- by limiting the Angels to two runs over five innings. The right-hander has won four of five decisions since going 0-4 in his first six starts.

    Fogg trailed 2-0 on run-scoring singles by Jose Guillen in the fourth and Kennedy in the fifth before being lifted for pinch-hitter Abraham Nunez, who singled up the middle to score Pittsburgh's first run off John Lackey (4-8).

    After Jason Kendall's force-play grounder tied it, Kendall surprised the Angels with a delayed steal of second ahead of Wilson's high-hop single to third. Third baseman Figgins made the play, but his high throw to first drew Darin Erstad off the bag.

    Angels manager Mike Scioscia then visited the mound, but Ward immediately hit a Lackey fastball into the seats in right-center for his ninth homer in 126 at-bats since being called up from Triple-A Nashville on May 11.

    "There were a a couple of plays that weren't routine that we probably can make on a given day but, as a pitcher you've got to keep making pitches, and unfortunately John didn't get the fastball in the right location to Ward," Scioscia said.

    Lackey was discouraged after losing his fifth in six decisions, saying, "It's frustrating when you throw the ball a lot better than your results."

    After Fogg was lifted, John Grabow and Brian Meadows pitched a scoreless inning each. Salomon Torres allowed Guillen's run-scoring double in the eighth.

    Mesa finished up in the ninth for his 15th save in 15 chances, bouncing back from his worst performance of the season, five runs allowed in one-third of an inning Saturday against Oakland.

    Game notes


    The Pirates won for only the second time in 16 games. They are 10-19 at home. ... Mesa's 15 consecutive saves are one short of Mike Williams' single-season club record set in 2001 and 2002. ... The Pirates were 0-7 in interleague play this season. Anaheim is 3-5 against the NL. ... Figgins went 0-for-5 to end his 13-game hitting streak.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press

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