The Pittsburgh Pirates dropped their fourth consecutive game on Friday night, a 4-2 loss to the Atlanta Braves.
Roansy Contreras started for the Bucs, giving up four runs (three earned) on eight hits with seven strikeouts and one walk in 4.2 innings. His mound opponent, Spencer Strider, was solid for Atlanta, giving up four hits and one walk while striking out eight batters in 5.2 innings. He was credited with the victory (2-2), while Kenley Jansen earned his 17th save of the season by pitching a perfect ninth.
The Braves took the lead in the third inning on a two run homerun by Dansby Swanson. It was his seventh long ball of the year, which also scored Michael Harris II, to make it 2-0.
A double by Ozzie Albies in the fourth scored Travis d’Arnaud to make it 3-0, and Matt Olson’s single in the fifth allowed Harris II to score his second run of the game to make it 4-0.
Pittsburgh attempted to make things interesting in the eighth inning. A ground rule double by Michael Chavis scored Bryan Reynolds to get the Bucs on the board. A sacrifice fly by Cal Mitchell scored Daniel Vogelbach, and the Braves’ lead had been cut in half at 4-2. Unfortunately for the Pirates, the rally would fall short and the Braves would hang on to win.
This was another difficult loss for Pittsburgh. After a strong showing last week, they have now dropped four straight and need to right this ship fast as they are in danger of that dreaded freefall that can cripple any season.
Pittsburgh will look to snap their losing skid on Saturday afternoon. Zach Thompson will take the mound for the Bucs against Charlie Morton for Atlanta.
Record vs. Braves: 0-2
Record vs. N.L. East: 3-3
Record on the Road: 11-15
Overall Record: 24-32
Let’s Go Bucs!