After a disappointing series in St. Louis, the Pittsburgh Pirates continued their road trip Friday night with the first of three games against the Atlanta Braves. Jameson Taillon took the hill for the Bucs and delivered a strong performance, while the struggling offense did just enough to come away with a 3-2 victory.
Taillon continued his recent trend of strong starts, giving up two runs on five hits in seven innings. Keone Kela pitched a scoreless eighth inning, and Felipe Vazquez, despite giving up a pair of hits, closed things down in the ninth to earn his 29th save of the season.
The Pirates took the lead in the top of the second on a RBI single by Elias Diaz. A single by David Freese scored Starling Marte in the top of the sixth to make it a 2-0 lead.
Atlanta got on the board in the bottom of the sixth on a solo homerun by Ronald Acuna Jr., and they tied the game an inning later when Johan Camargo hit a solo homerun to right field.
Gregory Polanco delivered the game winner tonight, a single to center field, scoring Adam Frazier to make it 3-2. Kela and Vazquez pitched the eighth and ninth innings respectively, clinching the victory for the Pirates.
This has been a difficult stretch of baseball lately for the Bucs, so this was a nice way to kick off the weekend series. They have now put themselves in a position to win this series, and given the way things have been going lately, that would be a nice shot in the arm for this team.
The Pirates and Braves will meet back up for the second game of the series tomorrow night. Chris Archer will take the mound for Pittsburgh against Kevin Gausman for Atlanta.
Record vs. Braves: 1-3
Record vs. N.L. East: 10-18
Record on the Road: 31-35
Overall Record: 66-69
Let’s Go Bucs!