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WSH@PIT: Morton tosses 5 2/3 innings of one-run ball

The Padres return home Monday for the start of a six-game homestand, beginning with three games against a franchise they've experienced a lot of success against the last four seasons -- the Pirates.

The Padres are 19-6 against the Pirates since 2010 and 8-4 at Petco Park over that stretch.

With two starters still on the disabled list -- Andrew Cashner and Robbie Erlin -- the Padres will again lean on Tim Stauffer to give them innings. He did that in his first start after moving from long reliever to the rotation. But the last time out against the D-backs, he allowed seven runs and got just one out.

"It's unfortunate, I put us in that position and didn't give us a chance out of the get-go," Stauffer said after the loss.

The Padres were able to cover for Stauffer's short start the last time because they had a day off the following day. They won't have that luxury this time around, so they'll need innings -- and quality innings -- from Stauffer against the Pirates.

Charlie Morton (1-7, 3.29 ERA) will get the start for the Pirates.

The 30-year-old right-hander has had success in three career starts against the Padres, owning a 1.33 ERA (three runs in 20 1/3 innings) and 0.93 WHIP in the three starts. If his first 11 starts of the season are any indication, he'll likely have to turn in a similarly excellent performance for the Pirates to win, since Morton is receiving just 2.77 runs in support per game this season.

Padres: Seeing more of Rivera
Catcher Rene Rivera made his third consecutive start on Sunday against the White Sox. And while the Padres aren't ready to -- and don't plan to -- anoint either Rivera or Yasmani Grandal as their primary catcher, it's clear the team is currently going with the hot hand.

Or in Rivera's case, the hot bat.

Going into Sunday's game, Rivera had three hits in the last two games, all doubles. He narrowly missed a home run in Saturday's 4-2 victory. He finished 0-for-3 on Sunday.

"Rene's doing good," said Padres manager Bud Black.

Rivera has also thrown out nine would-be basestealers, which ranks him fifth in the Major Leagues.

Pirates: Harrison providing spark
Josh Harrison made his 13th consecutive start Sunday as he's become a mainstay atop the lineup, hitting .316 (25-for-79) in 20 games at leadoff.

"He continues to play with so much energy on both sides of the ball," Hurdle said.

Harrison, who drilled his fourth home run of the season Sunday night, downplayed his impact.

"I haven't looked at it as anything more than an opportunity to go out there and do what I can to help the team," Harrison said. "I tried to stay within myself and take advantage of any opportunity that presents itself.

"It does give you a little different mindset, being usually told the night before that I'm playing. Little different than coming off the bench, being used for double-switches at any time. Being able to go through the day knowing that you're starting, definitely lets you prepare differently.

He's just not seeing it as a spark.

"I don't really look at it like that; I just play the game," Harrison said. "I have fun, I enjoy it, blessed to play this game, if that's infectious -- you can call it, but I just enjoy what I do."

Worth noting
• Chase Headley's home run on Sunday afternoon tied the 30-year-old with Johnny Frederick (1929-34, Brooklyn Dodgers) for the most home runs all-time by a player born in the state of Colorado with 85.

• Andrew McCutchen went 3-for-4 Sunday to lift his average from .298 to .307. His average had dipped below .300 for two days since May 1. The star center fielder also went through May without hitting a homer -- his first homerless month since April 2012 -- but started June with a deep solo shot at Dodger Stadium. Comments