HOUSTON, May 20 (UPI) -- A two-run homer by Aramis Ramirez in the top of the first inning Sunday night put the Pittsburgh Pirates ahead for good as they snapped the Houston Astros' season-high seven-game winning streak with a 5-3 victory.
With two outs in the first, Brian Giles singled and Ramirez knocked a 3-0 offering from Dave Mlicki (3-5) over the left-field wall. It was his first home run since Sept. 3.
Mlicki helped himself with an RBI single off Kip Wells (6-2) in the bottom of the second to make it 2-1, but the veteran righthander was chased in the fourth.
After Jason Kendall hit a leadoff single and stole second, Mlicki struck out Kevin Young and walked Pokey Reese before getting Wells on a foulout. But Mlicki surrendered a two-out single to Chad Hermanson that scored Kendall, then made an errant throw to first on Craig Wilson's ground ball as Reese scooted home from second to give the Pirates a 4-1 advantage.
Adrian Brown plated Young with a sacrifice fly in the eighth off reliever Pedro Borbon to make it 5-1.
The Astros made things interesting in the bottom of the frame.
With two out and Lance Berkman at first, Richard Hidalgo and Gregg Zaun loaded the bases with back-to-back infield hits off reliever Scott Sauerbeck. Closer Mike Williams replaced Sauerbeck, but rookie Morgan Ensberg greeted him with a two-run single.
Williams struck out pinch-hitter Geoff Blum on a full count to end the threat, then pitched a perfect ninth inning for his major league-leading 15th save in as many chances. Williams set a club record by recording a save in each of his last 10 appearances.
Wells, a Houston-area native, yielded one run and five hits in 6 2/3 innings.
Pittsburgh halted a four-game skid and ended Houston's eight-game winning streak at Astros Field.