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Pirates Beat Reds On Marte’s Homerun

After a disappointing series against the St. Louis Cardinals, the pressure was on the Pittsburgh Pirates to finish the regular season strong against the Cincinnati Reds this weekend at PNC Park. The Chicago Cubs trailed the Bucs by just two games in the race to host the Wild Card game, but two victories this weekend would guarantee a Wednesday night showdown on the North Shore.

The Reds and Pirates battled well into the night, and Starling Marte’s two-run homerun in the bottom of the 12th sent the home team to a 6-4 victory. With the win, the Pirates magic number to host the Wild Card game is down to just one.

Neither starter was all that impressive tonight. Francisco Liriano lasted just five innings, giving up four runs on seven hits, while Keyvius Sampson gave up four runs on three hits and two walks through five frames.

The Reds took the lead on Liriano and the Bucs in the second inning. Eugenio Suarez belted a two run homerun to deep center, scoring Jay Bruce and giving the Reds an early 2-0 lead.

Cincinnati would add to the lead in the third inning. Joey Votto, Brandon Phillips, and Bruce would hit consecutive one out singles, the latter allowing a run to score to score the game’s third run. Saurez’s RBI single to center scored Phillips, and the Reds led 4-0.

Andrew McCutcen got the Bucs on the board with a solo homerun in the fourth inning. Still, the Reds were in control of the game…that is, until the sixth inning.

Marte led off with a bunt single, advanced to second on McCutchen’s single, and to third on an Aramis Ramirez walk, loading the bases with no outs. Michael Morse drew a walk, scoring Marte. Pedro Alvarez grounded into a fielder’s choice, scoring the second run of the inning. Jordy Mercer then hit a huge two, out, RBI single to center, scoring Ramirez and tying the game, 4-4.

The game would remain tied until the 12th inning. Gregory Polanco drew a walk, setting the table for Marte to blast a two run homerun just over the Clemente wall in right field.

The Reds and Pirates will meet back up in the second game of the series at PNC Park in the final night game of the regular season. Brandon Finnegan will take the mound for Cincinnati against A.J. Burnett for Pittsburgh. Frist pitch is scheduled for 7:05pm.

Record vs. Reds: 7-10

Record vs. N.L. Central: 33-41

Record at Home: 52-27

Overall Record: 97-63

 

And…

As Always…

Let’s Go Bucs!

Chad Carlson

Co-Editor of Fans From The Stands, Pirates' Beat Writer For Armchair Report, Sports writer for AMN, SteelTownRock And Music City Encore Editor