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Kuhl as ice: Pirates righty blanks Boston in 2 IP

MLB.com

BRADENTON, Fla. -- Andrew McCutchen's third-inning sacrifice fly proved to be the difference in the Pirates' 3-2 win over the Red Sox on Saturday at LECOM Park.

McCutchen, making his last appearance before joining Team USA for the World Baseball Classic, broke a 2-2 tie by driving in Josh Harrison on a high fly ball to right field off Red Sox starter Hector Velazquez. Harrison singled, stole second and moved to third on a single by Starling Marte.

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BRADENTON, Fla. -- Andrew McCutchen's third-inning sacrifice fly proved to be the difference in the Pirates' 3-2 win over the Red Sox on Saturday at LECOM Park.

McCutchen, making his last appearance before joining Team USA for the World Baseball Classic, broke a 2-2 tie by driving in Josh Harrison on a high fly ball to right field off Red Sox starter Hector Velazquez. Harrison singled, stole second and moved to third on a single by Starling Marte.

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Right-hander Chad Kuhl, the Pirates' presumptive fourth starter, worked two scoreless innings with three strikeouts and three ground-ball outs. Kuhl, who threw two perfect innings in his spring debut, allowed a leadoff double to Brock Holt -- on a ball that was misread by left fielder Gregory Polanco -- then retired the next six Red Sox hitters in order.

WBC 17' exits create chances for young Bucs

"You're kind of looking for those situations. That was a time where I needed a strikeout. I got a ground ball," Kuhl said.

Video: BOS@PIT: McCutchen brings home Harrison with sac fly

This was Velazquez's second start with the Red Sox since he was acquired from the Mexican League. The righty, who is a non-roster invitee, gave up six hits and three runs over three innings.

Panda proving defensive value

"Physically I felt good," said Velazquez. "I was a little jumpy when they got those hits off of me. I'm new here so it's going to take me awhile to get to know everyone but with each start that I make, I'll get to know the batters more. I'm learning new things so next time out I can use what I learned the previous start."

Five Red Sox pitchers combined for five scoreless innings in relief of Velazquez.

Abad throws scoreless inning before WBC '17

Pittsburgh took a 2-0 lead in the second inning on RBI singles by David Freese and Jose Osuna. Left-hander Wade LeBlanc, competing for a spot in the Opening Day bullpen, served up a game-tying two-run homer to Red Sox outfielder Chris Young in the third.

Sox have luxury in Young

Video: BOS@PIT: Freese drives in run with single to center

"You're trying to get your feel. Sample size is real small," said Young, who is 5-for-11 in Grapefruit League play. "It's just the same approach you have every Spring Training. Just trying to have consistent at-bats and solid contact and not worry about the results too much. Just try to get your feel so that when the regular season comes around, you'll have the approach you want to go into the season with."

Video: BOS@PIT: Young belts a two-run homer to left field

Red Sox Up Next: After a couple of days off when the Red Sox were on the road, stars Mookie Betts and Dustin Pedroia should be back in action for Sunday's 1:05 p.m. ET home game against the Braves. Right-hander Kyle Kendrick makes the start in place of the injured David Price, who is out indefinitely with a left forearm injury. Robbie Ross Jr., Heath Hembree and Brandon Workman are scheduled to pitch in relief. Watch the game live on MLB.TV.

Pirates Up Next: Right-hander Jameson Taillon will make his second start of the spring as the Pirates head north to face the Yankees at Steinbrenner Field in Tampa, Fla., on Sunday. Right-handers Nick Kingham and Clay Holmes, both starters projected to pitch in Triple-A, will also pitch. Relievers Antonio Bastardo, A.J. Schugel and Dan Runzler are also expected to take the mound. Right-hander Masahiro Tanaka will start for the Yankees and be followed by closer Aroldis Chapman. Watch the game live on MLB.TV at 1:05 p.m. ET.

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Adam Berry has covered the Pirates for MLB.com since 2015. Follow him on Twitter and Facebook, read his blog and listen to his podcast.

Ian Browne has covered the Red Sox for MLB.com since 2002. Follow him on Twitter @IanMBrowne and Facebook.