April 3, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates left fielder Starling Marte (6) at bat against the Chicago Cubs during the sixth inning at PNC Park. he Pittsburgh Pirates won 3-0. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Pittsburgh Pirates win series against Cincinnati Reds

The Pittsburgh Pirates took advantage of Johnny Cueto leaving the game early and defeated the Cincinnati Reds by a 3-1 score.

Zack Cozart opened the scoring for Cincinnati with a home run in the top of the third inning, his third of the season. The homer was a solo shot.

The Pirates struck back in the fourth when Cueto walked Andrew McCutchen. Garrett Jones hit a double that Reds center fielder Shin-soo Choo was unable to block and McCutchen scored as a result tying the game.

Locke got into a jam in the fifth inning allowing one out singles to put runners at the corners. Joey Votto then hit a screaming line drive that Pedro Alvarez caught at the top of his jump for the second out. Todd Frazier then walked loading the bases but Jay Bruce would line out to Clint Barmes ending the threat.

The fifth inning appeared familar as Cueto got a quick out, but then after the first pitch to Travis Snider he showed signs of pain and after evaluation with the trainers left the game. Later it was learned that Cueto had pain in his right triceps and that he was removed for precautionary reasons. He was replaced by Alfredo Simon who had a rough go of it.

Snider would single and so would Barmes. Locke’s night would come to an end after 87 pitches in five innings. Josh Harrison took his place and flew out to right field moving Snider to third base. Snider scored when Starling Marte connected for a single.

Locke was replaced by Justin Wilson. Wilson got into two jams in his 1.2 innings. The first came after Russell Martin threw out Ryan Hanigan. The next two batters hit singles before Choo was just barely beaten at the bag by Garrett Jones. In the next inning, the first two runners reached base and after a fly out advanced Cozart to third base, Jared Hughes came in to retire Xavier Paul.

In the bottom of the seventh, Simon walked Alvarez and after retiring Snider came out of the game. J.J. Hoover then came in and one batter later pinch hitter Jose Tabata connected for a double that would score Snider.

Mark Melancon pitched a quick eighth inning and Jason Grilli closed the door in the ninth for

The series will conclude tomorrow afternoon when Phil Irwin makes his season debut against Mat Latos (0-0 2.84). The game is scheduled to start at 1:35. The Pirates hit .180 as a team against Latos.

On Locke’s start: Locke’s start was very inconsistent. He labored in the first and second inning struggling to throw first pitch strikes. His mound opponent Johnny Cueto was the first batter that had a first pitch strike thrown to him. Locke’s pitch count was very high and he was unable to strike hitters out. He walked four hitters without striking out a batter.

Locke 5 innings pitched, 4 hits, 1 [earned] run, 1 balk, 4 walks, 0 strikeouts, 87 pitches 45 for strikes

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