PITTSBURGH - Russell Martin hit a bases-loaded single off the left-center wall in the bottom of the 11th inning to give the Pittsburgh Pirates a 1-0 victory against the Detroit Tigers on Thursday night.
Neil Walker opened the inning with a sharp single to right off Luke Putkonen (1-1) and Andrew McCutchen walked. Gaby Sanchez loaded the bases by bouncing a single through the left side of the infield.
Martin then ripped a 2-1 pitch into the gap to give the Pirates (34-20) their 16th victory in 20 games.
Pittsburgh starting pitcher Jeff Locke (49) delivers during the fourth inning of Thursday’s game against the Tigers.
The Tigers left 11 runners on base as they lost their third straight.
Detroit starter Doug Fister struck out 12 in seven innings and allowed four hits. Miguel Cabrera hit two doubles for the Tigers, including the 400th of his career.
Bryan Morris (3-2) pitched a scoreless inning.
Both teams failed to cash in on consecutive outstanding scoring opportunities in the middle innings.
Pittsburgh hit three singles in a row to start the fourth and Detroit had four consecutive singles to start the fifth.
Walker led off the Pirates' fourth with a single but was caught stealing at second base. McCutchen and Garrett Jones then singled to put runners on the corners but were left stranded when Martin struck out and Travis Snider lined out.
In the Tigers' fifth, Matt Tuiasosopo and Bryan Pena hit back-to-back singles but Tuiasosopo was thrown out at home by Snider, the right fielder, while trying to score on Avasail Garcia's single.
Fister then singled to load the bases but Omar Infante hit a grounder to third baseman Brandon Inge, who threw home to force Pena for the second out. Andy Dirks grounded out to end the inning, leaving the bases loaded.
Detroit missed more chances.
The Tigers had runners on first and second with one out in the sixth when Vin Mazzaro relieved Locke and struck out Tuiasosopo and got Pena to ground out.
Mazzaro escaped a first-and-third jam situation with one out in the seventh by getting Dirks to pop out and Cabrera to ground out.
After Infante doubled with two outs in the ninth, McCutchen, the center fielder, tracked down Dirks' drive to the gap in right-center to end the inning.
Pittsburgh put a runner on second base with one out in the eight but Walker flied out and McCutchen grounded out.
Detroit RF Torii Hunter sat out with a bruised left elbow, which he suffered Wednesday night when hit by a pitch from Morris. Hunter will miss games Friday and Saturday at Baltimore to attend his son's high school graduation in Texas but expects to play Sunday against the Orioles. . Tigers SS Jhonny Peralta was ejected in the top of the fourth inning by home plate umpire Manny Gonzalez for arguing a called third strike. Peralta went 0-for-2, ending his 10-game hitting streak. . Pittsburgh 3B Pedro Alvarez was not at the ballpark Thursday after having dental surgery earlier in the day to remove two wisdom teeth. .. LHP Wandy Rodriguez (6-2, 3.58) will pitch for the Pirates against Cincinnati RHP Johnny Cueto (2-0, 2.76) on Friday night in the opener of a three-game home series. . Detroit RHP Max Scherzer (7-0, 3.42) will face Baltimore RHP Miguel Gonzalez (2-2, 3.94) in the opener of that three-game series.