In last night’s victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers at PNC Park, the Pittsburgh Pirates scored four runs in one inning. They wouldn’t score anymore the rest of the game, but the four runs were enough as they edged the Dodgers, 4-3. This afternoon, the Bucs once again had a four run inning, but unfortunately, they couldn’t hold the lead and the offense couldn’t muster another run as they fell to the Dodgers, 5-4.
The Pirates got to Dodgers’ starter Scott Kazmir early, tagging him for four runs in the first inning. Jordy Mercer walked to lead off the inning and advanced to third a double by Andrew McCutchen. After Jung-ho Kang walked to load the bases, Starling Marte singled home Mercer for the game’s first run. Sean Rodriguez forced a bases loaded walk to push home McCutchen, and Erik Kratz delivered a huge two-out, two run single to put the Bucs in command at 4-0.
The Dodgers got on the board in the third inning. Chris Taylor led off with a triple and scored on a sacrifice fly by Justin Turner, cutting the Pittsburgh lead to 4-1.
L.A. took the lead in the fifth inning with a four run outburst. Enrique Hernandez walked and advanced to third on a double by Turner. Trayce Thompson walked, loading the bases for Yasiel Puig. He singled home two runs, and Howie Kendrick singled home another run to tie the game. A.J. Ellis then singled home Puig to put the Dodgers in front, 5-4.
Pittsburgh had chances to score in the fifth, sixth and seventh innings, but left runners on base in each frame and were never able to push that tying run across the plate. They did get the tying run in scoring position in the bottom of the ninth, but Mercer flied out to end the game.
Francisco Liriano struggled today for the Bucs, lasting just 4.1 innings while giving up four runs on four hits with five walks. Jared Hughes pitched the rest of the fifth and the sixth innings, and Juan Nicasio finished off the game with three innings of relief. There’s not much more you can do than give your starting pitcher a four run lead after the first inning. Still, Liriano’s struggles continued today, with the control and then the hits came in bunches.
It’s tough to sweep a team in a three game series, much less a four game series. That being said, there were chances today for the Pirates to win this game. But they still come away with a series victory, capping off a 4-4 home stand.
The Bucs will jump on a plane and head out west for a difficult road trip, beginning tomorrow night against the Seattle Mariners. First pitch is scheduled for 10:10pm.
Record vs. Dodgers: 3-1
Record vs. N.L. West: 15-9
Record at Home: 22-19
Overall Record: 37-40
Let’s Go Bucs!