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Marte breaks out after slow start
Pirates prospect ends 0-for-7 slump, collects four hits
04/09/2011 4:56 PM ET
Starling Marte hit .315 with 22 steals at Class A Advanced last year.
Starling Marte hit .315 with 22 steals at Class A Advanced last year. (Scott Jontes/Four Seam Images)
Once Starling Marte finally got his first Double-A hit out of the way, he wasted no time collecting a few more.

The Pirates outfield prospect was mired in a season-opening 0-for-7 slump when he bunted for a hit in the third inning of Saturday's game against the Erie SeaWolves. He had two more singles and a double and stole a base to lead the defending Eastern League champions to their first win of the year, 6-2.

A 22-year-old who's played two seasons in the U.S., Marte scored a run on Opening Day but was 0-for-6 with five strikeouts in the Curve's two losses to Erie.

Batting second Saturday afternoon, he grounded out to first base against Luke Putkonen in his first trip to the plate. Facing the big right-hander again in the third, he legged out a two-out bunt and stole second.

Marte greeted reliever Rob Waite with a leadoff double in the sixth and scored the go-ahead run on a base hit by Jordy Mercer. He laced another single in the seventh, then was thrown out at second trying to stretch a single in the ninth.

Fellow prospect Quincy Latimore, also playing his first season at Double-A, contributed a single and a stolen base.

Southpaw Aaron Thompson (1-0) allowed a run on one hit and a walk, striking out two over six innings to earn the win.

Josh Jackson is a contributor to MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of the National Association of Professional Baseball Leagues or its clubs.
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