The Pittsburgh Pirates beat the Arizona Diamondbacks at Chase Field on Wednesday night setting the table for an opportunity to earn a series split on Thursday afternoon.
Mitch Keller earned the victory (4-8), beating Madison Bumgarner (6-11), while Eric Stout earned his first victory of the season for the Bucs. Keller gave up three runs on give hits with a walk and three strikeouts in 5.1 innings, while Bumgarner was tagged for five runs on eight hits in six innings.
Ben Gamel’s two-run double in the third gave the Pirates an early 2-0 lead. After they scored another run in the fourth to make it 3-0, the Bucs gave up two runs in the bottom half. Ketel Marte’s single got the D-backs on the board, and a sacrifice fly by Christian Walker cut the lead to 3-2.
Pittsburgh distanced themselves in the sixth with three runs. A double by Greg Allen scored Rodolfo Castro, and a single by Tucupita Marcano scored a pair to make it 5-2. Arizona got a run back in the bottom half of the inning on a sacrifice fly by Daulton Varsho, but Gamel’s groundout in the ninth made it 6-3.
The Diamondbacks had a great chance to make this game very interesting in the ninth inning, loading the bases with no outs. However, the Bucs pulled off a wild and bizarre double play to stall Arizona’s rally. A ground ball to third went to Castro at second, but after stepping on the base, he threw the ball to shortstop Kevin Newman instead of throwing to first for a routine double play. After a run down and a review, the double play did stand, and despite a run scoring, the Diamondbacks couldn’t complete the comeback.
This was a nice game for the Bucs to win after losing the first two games of the series. They have now given themselves a chance to a series split on Thursday afternoon. JT Brubaker will take the mound for Pittsburgh against Merrill Kelly for Arizona.
Record vs. Diamondbacks: 3-3
Record vs. N.L. West: 14-13
Record on the Road: 21-37
Overall Record: 45-66
Let’s Go Bucs!