BRADENTON, Fla. -- Left-hander Brian Matusz fired blanks in two middle innings as the Orioles downed the Pirates, 6-3, in Grapefruit League action Friday night.
Matusz worked around two singles and struck out two, part of a nine-strikeout night by four pitchers as Baltimore improved to 9-2-1 in Grapefruit League play. Starter Wei-Yin Chen (1-0) fanned four in 2 1/3 innings, and Tommy Hunter picked up two strikeouts while allowing a hit in 1 2/3 innings.
The game -- the Bucs' only preseason home tilt under the stars -- drew 6,353, a record crowd for a Pirates night game at McKechnie Field.
The Pirates' (4-9) offense consisted of Starling Marte, who followed singles in the first and a walk in the third with stolen bases and scored both times -- on Jose Tabata's sacrifice fly and Pedro Alvarez's single, respectively.
The Orioles jumped into a 4-1 lead in the third on consecutive run-scoring hits by Jason Pridie, Travis Ishikawa and Trayvon Robinson off Pirates starter Kyle McPherson (0-1).
Lew Ford added a seventh-inning homer off Vic Black, making it 5-2.
Up next: Top pitching prospect Dylan Bundy will make his first start this spring against the Red Sox in Fort Myers, Fla., on Saturday night. Kevin Gausman, who is ranked second on the list, will follow him for a 7:05 p.m. ET game that will also include Michael Belfiore, Zach Clark, Todd Redmond and T.J. McFarland. The Red Sox will start left-hander Felix Doubront.
Tom Singer is a reporter for MLB.com and writes an MLBlog Change for a Nickel. He can also be found on Twitter @Tom_Singer. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.