The true test of a top ball club is how they respond to a setback. Pirates fans would have been mildly concerned following the crushing 16 innings defeat at home to Arizona the night before, but the long journey to San Diego didn’t dent the resolve as Francisco Liriano produced an outstanding performance and helped his team to a 3 – 1 victory to maintain top spot in the NL Central. The lefty pitched 7 strong innings, striking out 13 and allowing just 4 hits and 2 walks, whilst Pedro Alvarez hit his 31st home run for the Pirates. The key play of the game was Chris Denorfia’s huge error in the fourth which allowed 2 runs and effectively won the game for the away team. Running in to stop a routine ground ball, his concentration slipped and the ball slid under his glove and to the wall which gave ample time for Andrew McCutcheon and Pedro Alvarez to run in 2 runs.