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By Chad Carlson
Photo Credit: Rob Carr/Getty Images
The Pirates lost two of the past three games against the Washington Nationals due to the fact that they were unable to score runs late in the game.  Today, they seemed to fix that problem as the offense exploded for 16 hits as they pounded the Nationals 10-2 to earn the series split.
After only tallying nine runs through the first three games at Nationals Park, the Buccos tagged starter Jason Marquis & Co. for ten runs on their way to a rout of the Nats.  Marquis lasted just 1.1 innings, giving up seven runs (six earned) on eight hits, inflating his ERA to 4.11 for the season.
The Pirates jumped on him right away in the opening inning, scoring three runs to take an early advantage that they would never surrender.  Andrew McCutchen, Neil Walker, and Lyle Overbay smacked three consecutive RBI singles to give the Buccos a 3-0 lead.  All three players recorded three-hit afternoons, leading the offensive surge.
Garrett Jones got into the act in the second inning on a two run double, scoring Alex Presley and Chase d’Arnaud.  Jones scored on Cutch’s RBI double to deep right field. Walker added an RBI single, and later scored on Overbay’s RBI double.  When all was said and done in the Pirates’ half of the second, the Nationals found themselves in an 8-0 hole.
That was more an enough insurance for Pirates’ starter Kevin Correia, who earned his 11th victory of the season in another solid performance.  He gave up two runs on six hits through six innings, while striking out six batters and walking only one.  His ERA sits at 3.74.  His only real blemish came in the second inning when the Nationals’ Wilson Ramos hit a two-run homerun.
Despite Correia’s strong start, most of the attention belonged to the offense.  While Cutch, Overbay, and Walker led the charge, nearly everyone on the roster contributed to the win this afternoon.  Five different Pirates tallied multi-hit games, including Presley and d’Arnaud.  Overbay had three RBI’s on the day, while Cutch and Walker added two a piece, along with Garrett Jones.  Michael McKenry recorded his first Major League RBI with a bases-loaded walk in the sixth inning. 
The bullpen came in and closed out the ballgame for the Pirates in the seventh, eighth, and ninth innings.  Daniel Moskos and Chris LeRoux combined to throw three innings of shutout baseball.  As a team, the Pirates limited the Nationals to just nine hits, one fewer than the Pirates had runs today.
This was another strong response to a loss by the Pirates this afternoon.  This was a game that the Buccos needed to win, and the energy and determination of the team were evident from the start.  They earn a split in the series, earn another winning road trip, and return home to PNC Park with a 43-41 record.
The Pirates will return to Pittsburgh for the start of a six-game homestand, which will conclude the first half of the season.  The final homestand before the All-Star break will prove to be a big one for the Buccos, with an opportunity to add to improve their N.L. Central record as they will play host for a pair of three-game series against the Houston Astros and Chicago Cubs.
Fans From The Stands would also like to congratulate Joel Hanrahan on being selected to represent the Pittsburgh Pirates at the All Star Game. 
Record Vs. Nationals: 4-4
Record Vs. N.L. East: 10-14
Record On The Road: 24-21
Overall Record: 43-41
And…
As Always…
Let’s Go Bucs!