24-year old Dario Agrazal pitched well in his big league debut but the Pirates offense couldn’t replicate its potency from last night, dropping game two 4-3.
Miami starter Jose Lopez went seven innings allowing as many hits and three earned runs with four strikeouts and a walk.
The first two innings gave the look of a potential pitchers duel. Pittsburgh struck first in the top of the third.
After Elias Diaz lead off the inning with a double, he was moved over to third by a groundout from Adam Fraizer. Kevin Newman then proceeded to hit a crazy short chopper down the third baseline allowing Diaz to score.
After a one-two-three inning from Agrazal in the bottom of the third, the Pirates added two more in the top of the fourth and were looking to take control of the game.
Starling Marte doubled to left field off a 79 MPH curveball Lopez. Josh Bell then knocked Marte in making the score 2-0 Pirates. Bell was thrown out at third during a fielders choice grounder from Colin Moran, but Pittsburgh immediately capitalized when Corey Dickerson rocked a Lopez four-seamer out to center for a double, allowing Moran to score.
It looked as though the Pirates would add another run or two but, after a groundout by Diaz and another from Agrazal, the threat was ended.
And Agrazal could have used those extra runs because the Marlins came back with three runs in the bottom of the fourth, tying the game.
The inning started off badly. Agrazal gave up a soft single to Garrett Cooper, then hit Brian Anderson on the first pitch. Agrazal was able to get Starlin Castro to fly out, but then Harold Ramirez singled off a 91 MPH sinker and knocked in Cooper.
Miami added one more after a Frazier error allowed JT Riddle to reach base and Anderson to score. Then, after a brief battle with Jorge Alfaro, Agrazal lost out and gave up another hit.
And then another.
It seemed Agrazal was done for the night but manager Clint Hurdle let him finish out the inning, which resulted in two straight strikeouts and got the Pirates out of the inning.
It was a nice display of resolve from Agrazal, who ended up going four innings and allowing six hits, giving up two earned runs with three strikeouts and no walks.
The final blow was dealt by the Marlins in the bottom of the fifth.
Pitching in relief, Geoff Hartlieb promptly gave up a single to Cooper, then a double to right from Anderson. With runners on second and third with no outs, Castro knocked in the final run of the game with a groundout to third that brought home Cooper.
Hartlieb would go another inning to end his night with three hits and one earned run allowed in two innings pitched.
Francisco Lirano followed Hartlieb and pitched a solid 8th and 9th, but the Bucs just couldn’t tack on another run.
For the Marlins, Cooper and Ramirez both went 3-4 with three runs scored total. Bell and Dickerson added a pair of hits and one RBI each for the Pirates.
The rubber match of the series kicks off at 1:10 EST (ATT Sports Net), with Chris Archer dueling Sandy Alcantara.