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Pirates’ offense MIA again in 2-0 loss

Pittsburgh Pirates v Colorado Rockies Photo by Dustin Bradford/Getty Images

The Pirates’ offense remained comatose for the second day in a row, wasting an excellent start by Joe Musgrove. The 2-0 loss to Colorado was the team’s third straight defeat, leaving them just a game above .500.

Musgrove was terrific in the early going, retiring the first dozen batters he faced. That streak ended with two singles to start the fifth. With runners at the corners, the team’s miserable infield defense surfaced again, as Josh Harrison fumbled an easy bouncer. The runner on third would have scored anyway, but the error cost Musgrove an unearned run that came in on a one-out sacrifice fly. That fly came after a rain delay that was brief enough for Musgrove to return. It could have been worse, but Gregory Polanco ended the inning by cutting another runner down at the plate.

Musgrove allowed just one more runner combined in the sixth and seventh. He finished his day with only four hits allowed, and no walks. Edgar Santana added a scoreless eighth.

Unfortunately, the Pirates were helpless against Kyle Freeland and the Rockies’ bullpen. They never staged anything resembling a rally, with runners reaching second just three times. The first came on a two-out double by Musgrove in the third. The second came on two walks, the second with two out, in the fourth. The third came in the seventh on a hit batsman and a two-out walk. Apart from Musgrove’s double, the Pirates’ only other hit was a single by Corey Dickerson to start the game, which was immediately followed by Starling Marte hitting into a double play.

Freeland left after seven, but Seunghwan Oh retired the Pirates easily in the eighth. The Rockies’ beleaguered closer, Wade Davis, had blown saves in his last two outings, but he retired the Pirates in order in the ninth.