McCutchen has 2 RBIs, Pirates beat Rays 6-5

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ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) - The Pittsburgh Pirates came out on top in their latest one-run game.

Andrew McCutchen drove in two runs, Jeff Locke pitched into the eighth inning, and the Pirates beat the Tampa Bay Rays 6-5 on Tuesday night.

The Pirates have the NL’s best record (27-18) since May 6, and moved above .500 (39-38) for the first time since starting the season 7-6.

Pittsburgh, which took a 6-1 lead, is 18-15 in games decided by a run.

“You continually try and create separation,” Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. “You need them all. You don’t take things for granted. Obviously it’s another one-run game for us. We play a bunch of them.”

The Pirates have won five straight road series after losing seven in a row.

McCutchen had an RBI single during a three-run third inning that put the Pirates ahead 4-0. The 2013 NL MVP had two RBIs in Pittsburgh’s 8-1 win Monday night over the Rays.

Locke (1-1) allowed three runs and eight hits over 7 1-3 innings. His night ended in the eighth when Evan Longoria trimmed the Rays’ deficit to 6-3 with a two-run homer.

“I’m just throwing strikes,” Locke said. “Challenge them a little more.”

Mark Melancon got his 13th save despite giving up Brandon Guyer’s two-run single in the ninth that pulled Tampa Bay to 6-5.

Chris Archer (4-5) gave up five runs and seven hits in seven innings for the Rays, who have lost 20 of 28. The right-hander had given up nine runs - four earned - over 40 2-3 innings in his previous seven starts.

“We just tried to stay selectively aggressive in the zone,” Hurdle said.

Pirates left fielder Starling Marte left in the fifth inning with concussion-like symptoms after a head-first slide during a failed stolen base attempt. He made contact with Rays second baseman Sean Rodriguez on the play.

Marte was sent to a local hospital for a CT scan.

Gregory Polanco started the first with a walk, stole second and advanced to third on catcher Jose Molina’s throwing error, and scored to make it 1-0 on a grounder by McCutchen. Polanco has reached base in all of his 14 games since being recalled from Triple-A Indianapolis on June 10.

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