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Marquis pitches two-hitter for Padres

Associated Press Modified: August 12, 2012 at 12:46 am •  Published: August 12, 2012

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Jason Marquis pitched so poorly early in the season that he was released.

Things have changed quite a bit since then.

The veteran right-hander took a no-hitter into the seventh inning before settling for a two-hitter as the San Diego Padres beat the Pirates 5-0 for their 11th straight win in Pittsburgh.

Travis Snider broke up the bid with an infield single off the pitcher's mound leading off the seventh inning. Second baseman Alexi Amarista dived to his right but the ball glanced off his glove.

Released earlier this season by Minnesota, Marquis struck out four and walked one in his first shutout since April 29, 2011, for Washington against San Francisco, and fifth of his career. Pedro Alvarez was the only other Pittsburgh player to reach base. He walked in the second and singled in the eighth.

"He was just pounding the strike zone with his sinker," San Diego third baseman Chase Headley said. "It was fun to watch."

The Padres, who joined the National League in 1969 as an expansion team, are the only major league franchise without a no-hitter. Johan Santana threw the first one in New York Mets' history on June 1 against St. Louis.

"It goes to show you how hard pitching a no-hitter really is," San Diego manager Bud Black said.

Marquis (6-6), who threw his eighth career complete game, was released by the Twins after going 2-4 with an 8.47 ERA in seven starts. San Diego signed the 13-year veteran as a free agent on May 29.

Marquis has never thrown a no-hitter.

"I'd love to have one, that's the goal every time you take the mound," Marquis said. "I gave it a pretty good shot but it didn't quite work out."

Marquis missed the latter part of spring training and the beginning of the season while on the bereavement list after his 7-year-old daughter, Reese Marquis, was severely injured in a bicycle accident near their Long Island home. Reese has recovered and Marquis is now pitching with a clear head.

"I wasn't able to do the things I needed to do to really be able to be ready to pitch at the start of the season but I don't regret that because my family will always come first," Marquis said. "The Twins were great with letting me spend all the time I needed with my family. I felt bad it didn't work out there but I'm also thankful for this opportunity. I enjoy playing with these guys."

San Diego won its sixth straight game and sent Pittsburgh to its third consecutive loss. The Padres' winning streak in Pittsburgh began in 2009.

Pirates manager Clint Hurdle managed Marquis in Colorado for part of the 2009 season when he won 15 games and earned his only All-Star Game selection.

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