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By Chad Carlson
Photo Credit: Jared Wickerham/Getty Images
The first-place Milwaukee Brewers came into town for a double-header against our Pirates tonight, and proved in game one why they are the hottest team in baseball.  The Brew-Crew beat down our battlin’ Buccos, who certainly didn’t battle at all, by a final score of 8-1 at PNC Park.
Pittsburgh fell to 0-9 on the season against the Brewers, who are playing better than anyone in baseball.  Jeff Karstens, who suffered his seventh loss of the season, pitched a nice game this evening.  The Buccos’ right hander gave up two runs on six hits through his seven innings of work. 
The big blow for Karstens came in the fourth inning.  After allowing two runners on with two outs, the Pirates intentionally walked Craig Counsell to load the bases for the Brewers’ pitcher, Chris Narveson.  The plan backfired for Pittsburgh as Narveson slapped a 2-run single to right field, giving the Brew-Crew a 2-0 lead.
Narveson pitched a dynamite game as well, giving up just five hits in 5.1 innings before leaving with an injury.  Kameron Loe and Takashi Saito shut the Pirates down through the seventh inning.
Milwaukee opened the game up in the eighth inning, scoring four two-out runs against Tony Watson.  Yuniesky Betancourt’s RBI double scored Corey Hart from first base to get things started.  After Casey McGehee was intentionally walked, Counsell delivered an RBI single, which scored Betancourt.  Jonathan Lucroy’s two-run double scored McGehee and Counsell, stretching the lead to 6-0.
After Ryan Ludwick blasted a homerun in the bottom of the eighth to get the Pirates on the board, Ryan Braun hammered a two-run shot in the ninth off Joe Beimel to make it 8-1.  Pittsburgh went peaceful in the ninth, with Ryan Doumit recording the final out.
As usual, the Brewers were better than the Pirates in every aspect of the game.  Their starting pitcher was better, they performed better with runners in scoring position, they fielded better, and their offense was more productive. 
Karstens pitched a solid game, giving up just two runs.  The bullpen, as has been the case as of late, led the game slip away.  Watson and Beimel combined to give up six runs on five hits through two innings of work.  To add to the frustration, the Brewers were able to score eight runs in a game in which Braun and Prince Fielder combined to go 1-10.  The Pirates, on the other hand, tallied eight hits, but were 0-8 with runners in scoring position. 
On a bright note, Jose Tabata continued his hot streak at the plate, going 3-4, while Josh Harrison added two hits, including a triple.
In other news, Steve Pearce was injured during the game, while Kevin Correia was placed on the DL.  That’s right…more injuries to the Pirates.
The two teams have a quick half hour break before taking the field again the second game of the double-header. 
Record Vs. Brewers: 0-9
Record Vs. N.L. Central: 28-27
Record At Home: 29-36
Overall Record: 59-67
And…
As Always…
Let’s Go Bucs!