The Pittsburgh Pirates have fallen on tough times. After a surprisingly good start in April, it has been all down hill since then. A team that was in first place a little over a week ago, now sees themselves five games out first, while only four games ahead of last place. On Wednesday afternoon they wrapped up a three-game series with the Chicago Cubs with an 8-3 loss.
Pittsburgh held a lead in this game after Josh Palacios hit an RBI double to right in the second inning. That lead was short lived as Chicago would plate three runs in the third inning. Pirates’ killer Ian Happ gave the Cubs two more runs with a double in the sixth. Nico Hoerner added another run in the seventh with a solo homer to right. A fielding error by Trey Mancini in the bottom half of the inning gave Pittsburgh two more runs. Chicago plated their final two runs in the eighth when Nick Madrigal singled to right center.
Rich Hill lost his seventh game of the season after pitching 5.2 innings. He allowed five runs, three earned, on four hits with four strikeouts and two walks. Roansy Contreras threw 1.1 innings allowing one run on one hit with three strikeouts and one walk. Angel Perdomo covered the next 2/3 of an inning, allowing two runs on one hit with two walks and one strikeout. After Yerry De Los Santos collected the final out of the eighth, David Bednar struck out one batter and allowed one hit in the ninth.
The Cubs sent Kyle Hendricks to the bump and he would pitch 6.1 innings. Hendricks allowed three runs, one earned, on two hits with three walks and two strikeouts. Mark Leiter Jr., Julian Merryweather, and Michael Fulmer pitched the remaining 2.2 innings. Combined they would strikeout four and walk two.
There is no hiding the fact that the offense and bullpen have been the key factors to this current losing skid. It will be interesting to see if any moves are made to the coaching staff or roster soon to try and turn things around. The Pirates will hit the road for four games against the Miami Marlins starting Thursday night.
Record vs. Cubs: 0-6
Record vs. N.L. Central: 10-13
Record at Home: 18-19
Overall Record: 34-39
Let’s Go Bucs!