Milwaukee, WI – Marco Estrada tossed seven-strong innings of one-run ball as the Milwaukee Brewers edged the Pittsburgh Pirates, 2-1, in the opener of a three-game set at Miller Park.
Estrada (4-2), who was perfect through 4 2/3 innings, scattered four hits and struck out eight without issuing a walk to earn the win.
"Marco had great location today. He really located it well. His fastball was live and he had command of all of his pitches," said Brewers manager Ron Roenicke.
Alex Gonzalez drove in both runs with a two-run double in the second inning. Aramis Ramirez and Carlos Gomez scored one run apiece for the Brewers, winners in two of their last three games.
Francisco Rodriguez recorded the final out in the ninth to notch his first save of the season. It was hits first save since July 18, 2012.
A.J. Burnett (3-5) was charged with the loss after giving up two runs on three hits while striking out six over seven innings. Burnett has dropped three straight decisions and hasn't won since May 3.
Neil Walker went 2-for-4 and drove in the lone run for the Pirates, who had won four straight entering the contest.
"We haven't been able to solve Estrada. He didn't leave many balls over the plate. He is always tough on us," said Pirates manager Clint Hurdle.
With runners on second and third with one out in the second inning, Gonzalez ripped a double to left-center field to score Ramirez and Gomez.
Burnett then retired the next 10 batters he faced before giving up a single to Estrada in the fifth.
The Bucs got on the board in the seventh inning as Walker doubled home Russell Martin. Martin reached on a fielder's choice before Walker roped a double off the wall in right-center field.
Reliever Jim Henderson gave up a leadoff single to Andrew McCutchen in the ninth, but was able to retire the next two hitters before being forced to leave the game with an apparent right hamstring injury.
Rodriguez was able to get Walker to ground out to end the game.
Milwaukee is 16-0 when leading after eight innings ... Earlier on Friday, the Brewers placed right-handed pitcher Hiram Burgos on the 15-day disabled list, retroactive to May 22, with a right shoulder impingement. Additionally, left- handed hurler Tom Gorzelanny was reinstated from the DL ... Friday's game kicked off a stretch of 20 games in 20 days for the Brewers ... Burnett has allowed three runs or fewer in each of his 11 starts this season.