ARIZONA DIAMONDBACKS

Alex Avila hits home run in Diamondbacks’ win over Pirates

Jun 21, 2018, 7:42 PM

Arizona Diamondbacks' Alex Avila (5) is greeted by Ketel Marte (4) after hitting a two-run home run...

Arizona Diamondbacks' Alex Avila (5) is greeted by Ketel Marte (4) after hitting a two-run home run off the Pittsburgh Pirates during the third inning of a baseball game in Pittsburgh, Thursday, June 21, 2018. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

(AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

PITTSBURGH — Ketel Marte and Alex Avila each hit two-run homers and the Arizona Diamondbacks scored eight runs in the first three innings to power their way to a 9-3 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates on Thursday night.

Marte’s blast capped a three-run first, while Avila’s shot in the third extended the NL West-leading Diamondbacks’ advantage to 8-0.

Jon Jay doubled in each of the first two innings, the second of which drove in two runs. The center fielder is hitting .340 in 13 games since being acquired June 6 from Kansas City in a trade.

Staked to the early cushion, Zack Godley (8-5) won his third straight start. He gave up three runs – two earned – and four hits in six innings with five strikeouts and three walks.

Avila went 2-4 with three RBI. It was his first multi-hit game since April 24.

Chad Kuhl (5-5) lasted just two-plus innings and was lifted following Avila’s homer. Kuhl was tagged for eight runs and eight hits after allowing three earned runs or less in seven of his previous eight starts.

Pittsburgh rookie Austin Meadows had three hits.

Daniel Descalso’s sacrifice fly brought home the game’s first run before Marte followed with his sixth home run into the right-field stands. Paul Goldschmidt singled in Jay in the second to make it 6-0.

Francisco Cervelli hit an RBI single in the fourth inning for the Pirates. Starling Marte doubled in a run and scored on Colin Moran’s sacrifice fly in the sixth.

The Diamondbacks have scored 35 runs in four games – winning three of them – against Pittsburgh this season.

TRAINER’S ROOM

Diamondbacks: RHP Shelby Miller (Tommy John elbow ligament replacement surgery) rejoined the team following four minor league rehab starts and is scheduled to be activated from the disabled list Monday to pitch at Miami. Miller was injured April 22, 2017, while facing the Los Angeles Dodgers. He will take the rotation spot of RHP Matt Koch, who was optioned to Triple-A Reno while RHP Jake Barrett was recalled from the Aces to provide extra bullpen help and got the final out.

Pirates: RHP AJ Schugel (right shoulder discomfort) has started playing catch on flat ground at the team’s spring training facility in Bradenton, Florida. The reliever has been on the DL all season.

TIME TO MAKE UP

The Pirates and Milwaukee will play a traditional doubleheader July 14 at Pittsburgh to make up the game postponed Wednesday night because of rain.

UP NEXT

Diamondbacks: LHP Patrick Corbin (6-5, 3.48 ERA) is 1-2 with a 5.90 ERA in five career starts against the Pirates.

Pirates: RHP Ivan Nova (4-5, 4.42) has won both starts with a 1.54 ERA since being activated from the DL on June 10. He missed two weeks with a sprained right ring finger.

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