Ivan Nova cracked, Robbie Ray didn’t.
Ray twirled a complete-game shutout, baffling the Pirates while Nova was merely pretty good and the Diamondbacks pulled out a 3-0 win in 2 hours, 10 minutes on Tuesday.
Ray struck out 10 and walked none, allowing four hits across his 115 pitches. The Pirates never sent more than four batters to the plate in an inning.
Nova cruised through five innings, with 39 pitches and never double digits in an inning to that point. He struck out just three, with the low pitch total, but didn’t allow a hit until the fifth. He allowed a walk and six hits in seven innings.
Arizona broke through in the sixth when Chris Owings smacked a double to left, scoring Rey Fuentes. Paul Goldschmidt just missed a homer to lead off the seventh, and settled for a double off the very top of the right-field wall. Jake Lamb singled to put runners on the corners, and a Brandon Drury infield single and a Fuentes groundout pushed two more runs home.
The Pirates’ best chance came in the fourth, when Josh Harrison led off with a double. He moved to third on Josh Bell’s groundout, but Ray fanned David Freese and Francisco Cervelli back-to-back to keep it scoreless at that point.
The Bucs didn’t get a guy to second after that. Nova helped his cause with a leadoff single in the bottom of the sixth, but was quickly erased on a 1-6-4-3 double play.
Andrew McCutchen and Adam Frazier got the Pirates’ other two hits. Frazier didn’t start against the skinny lefty. He’d started nine in a row — as he should — before coming off the bench Monday, getting some extended rest in his first full season. He should be back in the lineup for Wednesday’s 12:35 p.m. rubber match between Zack Godley and Chad Kuhl.