Series: Game 2 of 3

Series tied 1-1 (as of 7/27)

Game 1: Tuesday, July 26
Game 2: Wednesday, July 27
Game 3: Thursday, July 28

Pirates 1

(44-57, 20-30 away)

Marlins 3

(50-48, 26-23 home)

    7:05 PM ET, July 27, 2005

    Sun Life Stadium, Miami, Florida 

    123456789 R H E
    PIT 000000100 1 7 0
    FLA 00020010 - 3 6 0

    W: J. Vargas (1-0)

    L: R. Vogelsong (0-1)

    S: T. Jones (17)

    Rookie Vargas collects first major-league victory

    MIAMI (AP) -- Jason Vargas' first major-league win came as a bit of a surprise to him.

    Vargas pitched three scoreless innings following a second rain delay and Juan Encarnacion and Damion Easley homered, leading the Florida Marlins over the Pittsburgh Pirates 3-1 on Wednesday night.

    Vargas (1-0), who allowed a one-out walk to Matt Lawton in the fifth, retired nine of the 10 batters he faced in his fourth appearance since being called up from Double-A Carolina on July 14.

    "It hasn't sunk in yet. I didn't realize I was going to get the win until someone said something," Vargas said. "It's a unique feeling, it's only happened once."

    He struck out five of the first six batters he faced after taking over from starter Ismael Valdez.

    "He's been outstanding since he's been here," Marlins manager Jack McKeon said. "He's something special. Of all the kids we've brought up, he's something special."

    Encarnacion hit his 15th homer, a two-run shot in the fourth, off Ryan Vogelsong (0-1). Easley hit a solo shot, his eighth, off Salomon Torres in the seventh.

    "It always feels good to contribute," said Easley, who made his fourth consecutive start in place of injured shortstop Alex Gonzalez. "When I'm in there they count on me to help out and I'm glad to have been able to do that."

    Pirates rookie Chris Duffy had three hits, including an RBI single in the seventh. Duffy, who went 4-for-5 in Pittsburgh's 6-3 win on Tuesday, singled and tripled in his first two at-bats to give him six consecutive hits.

    "I'm just trying not to think too much," Duffy said. "I'm trying to be relaxed and it's working out."

    Todd Jones pitched the ninth for his 17th save in 19 opportunities.

    Florida won for the fifth time in seven games. The Marlins, who had lost eight of their nine previous meetings with the Pirates, used Antonio Alfonseca -- who allowed three hits, including Duffy's RBI single -- Guillermo Mota and Jones for an inning apiece following Vargas.

    "This is the way we envisioned using the bullpen," said McKeon, who had a 10-minute meeting following the game that included owner Jeffrey Loria and GM Larry Beinfest. "With Mota out and Alfonseca out we haven't been able to. Hopefully everyone will be able to stay healthy, and maybe we get one more guy and we can keep using the bullpen this way."

    The game started 40 minutes late as a result of a pregame downpour that caused puddles to form in the outfield of the normally quick-draining Dolphins Stadium turf.

    Neither starter returned after a second shower interrupted the game for 42 minutes midway through the third.

    "Any time you lose your starter it's going to hurt you, and certainly tonight it was very disappointing," Pittsburgh manager Lloyd McClendon said.

    Pirates rookie left-hander Zach Duke pitched two scoreless innings, lowering his ERA from 0.93 to 0.87, but didn't return after the second delay.

    "I was a little anxious," Duke said of the wait. "I want to go out there and I want to compete but they're just trying to protect my arm."

    Valdez allowed four hits in three innings in his first start of the season. He allowed one run in two relief innings after he returned from a hairline fracture of his right fibula

    "I feel fine physically," Valdez said. "If it hadn't been for the weather, I could have gone longer. It was a good workout. The bottom line is we won. We needed this game. Everybody contributed tonight."

    Game notes

    Torres, catcher Humberto Cota and third baseman Freddy Sanchez looked on in the seventh as Mike Lowell's popup to the left of home plate landed just inside the third base line before the ball rolled foul. Lowell hit Torres' next pitch into the left-field corner and was initially ruled safe when he reached around second baseman Jose Castillo's tag to grab the base but was out when he overslid. ... Marlins first baseman Carlos Delgado went 0-for-3 with a walk to end a 12-game hitting streak. ... Marlins pitchers combined for 13 strikeouts.

    Copyright by STATS LLC and The Associated Press