The road has not been kind to the Pittsburgh Pirates this year, as they currently own the worst road record in Major League Baseball. After being swept in three games by the Tampa Bay Rays to start this six-game road trip, they flew north to start a three-game series with the Washington Nationals on Monday night. Pittsburgh led for most of the game, but a two run eighth inning home run gave Washington a 3-2 victory.
The Pirates got on the board in the top of the second when Josh VanMeter, who just came off the IL, hit a sac fly to center to bring home Bligh Madris. Pittsburgh would add to that lead in the fifth on a solo home run by Oneil Cruz. Both of these runs were charged to Erick Fedde. Fedde allowed three hits over five innings, while walking two and striking out four.
Pittsburgh would use Miguel Yajure as the starter tonight, while they look for a fifth starter in the rotation. He would allow four hits over four innings and walk three batters. Yajure would be replaced by Yerry De Los Santos in the fifth inning. He would work two innings, allowing one run on one hit with a walk. That lone run came in the sixth when Luis Garcia scored on a ground out by Yadiel Hernandez.
After pitching a scoreless seventh inning, Chris Stratton would get charged for his fifth blown save in the eighth. Stratton allowed two runs on five hits with two strikeouts during his two innings on the mound tonight. Both of those runs would score via a home run by Maikel Franco that traveled 410 ft. to left field.
It’s tough to win games when you only score two runs, but having the lead going into the bottom of the eighth makes this one sting even more. The Pirates collected a total of seven hits on the night, with Hoy Park leading the way with two. These two teams will be back in action tomorrow night in game two of this three game series. Jose Quintana is slated to start for Pittsburgh, while the Nationals will counter with Patrick Corbin.
Record vs. Nationals: 3-2
Record vs. N.L. East: 3-6
Record on the Road: 12-24
Overall Record: 29-44
Let’s Go Bucs!