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MLB: Pirates rally with 7 late runs, top Angels 10-9 in 10

By Joe Resnick

Associated Press

Published: Sunday, June 23 2013 11:33 p.m. MDT

Los Angeles Angels center fielder Mike Trout, top, trips over third baseman Alberto Callaspo as they try to get a foul ball hit by Pittsburgh Pirates' Pedro Alvarez during the first inning of their baseball game on Sunday, June 23, 2013, in Anaheim, Calif. Alvarez was safe on the play.

Mark J. Terrill, Associated Press

ANAHEIM, Calif. — Pittsburgh closer Jason Grilli and Los Angeles Angels counterpart Ernesto Frieri each gave up three runs Sunday. The final outcome came down to one pitch that Mike Trout missed.

Pedro Alvarez homered for the fourth straight game, Starling Marte capped a three-run ninth inning with a tying single, and the Pirates added four more in the 10th to beat the Angels 10-9 and complete their first interleague sweep on the road.

Trailing 6-3 entering the ninth, the Pirates pulled even against Frieri — his second blown save in 19 attempts. The right-hander issued a leadoff walk to Neil Walker, ending his string of 22 consecutive batters retired, then gave up a single to Gaby Sanchez and a one-out grounder by pinch-hitter Andrew McCutchen that scored Walker.

Next came a pinch-hit RBI double by Russell Martin over the head of rookie left fielder J.B. Shuck, followed by Marte's clutch hit.

"I got to hang out in the air conditioning in here for about six innings, so I felt fresh when I got out there," Martin said with a grin. "But our guys battled back and had great ABs collectively, top to bottom, and it was fun to be a part of. We have no quit, that's for sure."

Martin drove in the final run — and ultimately the decisive one — with an RBI single in the 10th.

"Ernie's been throwing the ball as well as anybody in the league," losing pitcher Kevin Jepsen said. "Anybody can have a rough game. When you're pitching in the back of the 'pen when the game is on the line, it's just more magnified. He was one strike away a couple of times, so it wasn't like he had no shot. Sometimes that's how close you come. But Ernie is very resilient and he'll be fine."

Alvarez led off the 10th against Jepsen (0-2) with a double to center field over Trout's head — seven innings after Trout had shifted over from left after an injury to Peter Bourjos.

A pair of one-out walks, one of them intentional to Walker, loaded the bases and brought up Travis Snider. He promptly lined a single to left that bounced over Shuck's head for an error and all the way to the fence as all three runners scored.

"When those guys get guys on base, they take advantage. That's why they're playing as well as they are," Jepsen said.

Grilli closed it out despite giving up five hits, including RBI singles by Alberto Callaspo, Shuck and Brendan Harris. The right-hander finally ended it by striking out Trout with the potential tying and winning runs at third and second.

"We pushed all the chips in and got what we needed to get from our guys — and at the end of the day, the gunslinger got it done," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said.

Mark Melancon (2-1) pitched a perfect inning for the win.

Pittsburgh starter Charlie Morton was charged with six runs — three earned — and four hits through 5 2-3 innings in his third start of the season. The right-hander missed the first 65 games while recovering from elbow surgery last June.

Pirates catcher Tony Sanchez, the team's No. 1 draft pick in 2009, went 1 for 4 in his major league debut — as the designated hitter.

His first time up he hit a ground-rule double against Joe Blanton that struck the 18-foot wall in right field halfway up and became wedged at the bottom of the out-of-town scoreboard. The ball remained there until the end of the half-inning, when a maintenance worker climbed a ladder and plucked it out before giving it to Pirates right fielder Garrett Jones.

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