Zambrano, Marlins walked over by Pirates

Zambrano, Marlins walked over by Pirates

Published Jul. 21, 2012 10:19 p.m. ET

PITTSBURGH (AP) -- A frustrated Ozzie Guillen needed an earlier shower after this one.

The Miami Marlins were shut down by A.J. Burnett, and the Pittsburgh Pirates matched a season high with their fourth consecutive win, a 5-1 victory Saturday night.

The loss was the fourth straight for the Marlins, who at 44-50 are playing anything like the team that had high expectations after a free-spending offseason. Guillen was asked where his frustration level is, sitting 10 games back in the National League East standings.

"Mine? I don't know, I showered before you guys (in the media) got here, let's put it that way," Guillen said. "I never did that before in life (during the regular season). I made sure I cooled off before I talked to you guys."

The Pirates went ahead during a four-run fourth in which they did not record a hit and did not so much as record an official at-bat until their ninth man came to the plate.

Miami starter Carlos Zambrano imploded in the fourth, when Pittsburgh scored three times via bases-loaded walks and once on an error.

"You're not going to win many games if that happens in one inning," Guillen said.

Like Guillen, Zambrano (5-8) said he's as frustrated as he has been all season. He was charged with five runs -- four earned -- three hits and six walks with two strikeouts. Zambrano has lost five of his past six decisions and has allowed at least three earned runs in each of his past eight outings after doing so in four of his first 11 starts.

"I'm not pitching the way I'm supposed to pitch," Zambrano said. "I'm not doing my job. It's terrible."

In the fourth alone, Zambrano walked three, hit two batters and committed a throwing error on a sacrifice attempt by Burnett, who remained undefeated at home by pitching 7 2-3 strong innings. Pittsburgh's Rod Barajas scored on that play, Clint Barmes came home on a sacrifice fly by Neil Walker and Burnett was forced in when Jones walked.

Chad Gaudin continued the trend when he was called in to relieve Zambrano, walking Casey McGehee to force Presley home.

The most recent time a team scored four runs in one inning without a hit was the Oakland Athletics on Sept 23, 1998, against Seattle, according to STATS, LLC.

Also according to STATS, LLC, only once in the past 28 years has an inning began with each of the first eight men to come to the plate failing to record an official at-bat: St. Louis did it against Philadelphia on June 26, 1991.

Guillen wondered aloud if Zambrano's back was bothering him, but Zambrano insisted it was "feeling the best it's ever felt." He cited his mechanics for his struggles.

"What can I say? Too many walks, and that kills pitchers," Zambrano said.

The announced crowd of 39,411 was the 11th sellout of the season in a town that hasn't experienced a winning baseball season in 20 years.

The fourth alone was enough for Burnett (11-3) to improve to 7-0 at home this season and for Pittsburgh (53-40) to move 13 games over .500 for the first time since the end of the 1992 season.

The Pirates are a half-game behind the Cincinnati Reds in the NL Central.

Garrett Jones had two RBIs and Alex Presley scored two runs for the Pirates, who have the majors' best home record at 31-14.

Brad Lincoln got four outs to earn his first save as a professional. Pittsburgh has won 20 of its past 24 at home and 15 of its past 20 overall.

Justin Ruggiano led off the second with his seventh home run for the Marlins, who have lost four straight.

Although he had only three strikeouts, Burnett scattered eight hits and one walk. Only four Marlins runners to advance past first base.

"What's not dominant about retiring guys, giving up eight hits but only giving up one run?" Pittsburgh manager Clint Hurdle said. "That's dominant."

Burnett improved to 8-1 in 12 career starts at PNC Park. That's the same record Zambrano entered the game with at the 11-year-old park.

Greg Dobbs and Omar Infante each had two hits for the Marlins, whose only hit with a runner in scoring position was Lee's infield single. Miami entered on a 1-for-23 slide in such situations.

NOTES: Miami 3B Hanley Ramirez was not in the lineup for the second consecutive game due to an infected right hand. Guillen said Ramirez is expected to not be in the lineup for a few more days. Ramirez, whose infection was the result of missing a dosage of prescribed antibiotics, entered the game as a pinch-runner Friday. ... On June 26, 1991, the Cardinals walked six times and hit two sacrifice flies to begin the bottom of the first against Phillies. ... According to STATS, LLC., the previous time any team had eight consecutive plate appearances without an at-bat was Aug. 13, 2008, by the Astros in the sixth inning against the Giants. ... Sunday's pitching matchup is Miami RHP Anibal Sanchez (5-6, 3.95 ERA) against Pittsburgh RHP Jeff Karstens (2-2, 4.15)