Series: Game 1 of 2

Montreal leads 1-0 (as of 7/19)

Game 1: Monday, July 19
Game 2: Tuesday, July 20

Expos 6

(33-59, 15-32 away)

Pirates 2

(42-48, 21-23 home)

    7:05 PM ET, July 19, 2004

    PNC Park, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania 

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    MON 011000400 6 11 0
    PIT 200000000 2 6 2

    W: J. Horgan (3-0)

    L: J. Grabow (0-4)

    Sledge drives in two in four-run seventh

    PITTSBURGH (AP) -- The Montreal Expos have baseball's worst offense partly because they don't hit many homers or drive the ball to the outfield enough. For at least one night, though, the routine groundball provided more than enough scoring.

    Terrmel Sledge drove in two runs with a grounder just past first base during a four-run seventh inning and the Expos halted Pittsburgh's 10-game home winning streak with a 6-2 victory Monday night.

    The Expos got all the help they needed from an overconfident local TV news reporter and an underachieving Pirates infield defense.

    "I was watching TV at noon today and the anchorwoman said the Pirates had won 10 in a row at home and after tonight it would be 11," Expos manager Frank Robinson said. "I wish I could talk to her."

    Pinch-hitter Ron Calloway, just up from Triple-A Edmonton after hitting .070 with Montreal earlier, added a two-run single in a go-ahead seventh in which the Expos hit the ball out of the infield only twice.

    Ending the Pirates' longest home streak since they won 24 in a row late in the 1978 season, the Expos improved to 4-1 against Pittsburgh to win the season series for the third straight year.

    "They kept giving us opportunities and we kept not taking advantage of them, but then we did a few things right to help ourselves," Robinson said.

    Groundballs to first baseman Randall Simon proved Montreal's most reliable method of scoring after the Pirates' Craig Wilson hit a two-run homer in the first off Rocky Biddle. It is the Pirates' only multi-run homer in their 12 homers since July 2.

    Biddle, who shut out the Pirates for five innings in a 4-0 victory on July 10, left after five Monday with the score tied at 2. Joe Horgan (3-0) retired the only batter he faced for the victory.

    Montreal scored in the third on Brian Schneider's two-out RBI single, then tied it against Pirates starter Josh Fogg in the third when Brad Wilkerson doubled and came around to score on Jose Vidro's grounder to -- of course -- Simon.

    Simon fielded the ball behind first but Fogg could not handle the first baseman's high throw, which arrived just before Fogg and second baseman Jose Castillo collided. Vidro was given a single and Fogg drew an error for not handling the throw, scoring Wilkerson.

    "Josh should have caught it and stepped on first and he would have been out of the inning," Pirates manager Lloyd McClendon said with an audible sigh. "It just wasn't our night."

    Fogg was lifted after five innings, yielding six hits and two runs. Biddle gave up three hits and two runs in his second start of the season, both against Pittsburgh.

    The Expos loaded the bases with none out in the seventh, but reliever John Grabow (0-4) had a chance to get out of the inning when Vidro grounded back to the mound for a double play. After Tony Batista was intentionally walked to load the bases, Sledge hit a seemingly routine grounder to Simon.

    But when Grabow failed to cover first, Sledge beat Simon to the bag for a single. Wilkerson also kept running on the play from second and scored almost before Simon could react and get the ball home.

    "The first couple of steps I noticed Simon was too far away and Grabow was still near the mound, so I knew I was going to beat the pitcher," Sledge said. "It was a matter of beating Simon to the bag. ... It doesn't happen very often, but (you run hard) because you never know what will happen."

    Grabow was upset at costing himself a chance to end the inning with no scoring.

    "If I field my position, we're out of the inning and it's still a tie game," Grabow said. "My job is to get over (to first) and I didn't get over."

    McClendon said, "It should have been an out, easy."

    Calloway, 3-for-43 during his earlier tour with Montreal, then singled into center to score two more runs.

    "I'm just looking for an opportunity to do something, help the team and maybe get another chance," Calloway said.

    Luis Ayala followed Horgan with two scoreless innings, and Chad Codero pitched the ninth for his eighth save in nine chances. ^Notes:@ The Pirates lost for the fifth time in 20 games. They are 16-7 since losing 12 of 14. ... Montreal had dropped two straight and seven of 11. ... The Expos are 15-8 against the Pirates since 2000 and have won six of nine in Pittsburgh. ... Montreal has scored the fewest runs in the majors (308) and has the second fewest homers (78) in the NL.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press