The Pirates finally ended their season worst nine game losing streak with a wild 11-4 victory over the Reds at Great American Ballpark.
Left field Corey Dickerson’s two homer, five RBI night was overshadowed by a legit, punches thrown brawl in the ninth, capping a feud that has been brewing all year between the two teams.
Pirates’ starter Joe Musgrove had it while Tanner Roark didn’t.
Roark struggled through 85 pitches in three and a third innings, allowing five runs on six hits and four walks.
Musgrove meanwhile breezed through six innings on 79 pitches, 72% of them for strikes, as he allowed two singles, a double and two solo homers with no walks and four strikeouts.
With the Pirates up 5-2 Dickerson slammed a two-run homer to right in the fifth off reliever Lucas Sims, then two innings later added a solo shot off Robert Stephenson.
Keone Kela came on to pitch the seventh for the Pirates and while striking out two of the three batters he faced was warned by the umpire, as were both benches, for throwing too close to pinch-hitter Derek Dietrich, who’d been involved in another brawl earlier in the season.
In the bottom of the eighth, Reds’ manager David Bell was ejected for arguing balls and strikes, although it must be admitted the the umpire had an erratic night.
After being widely reported that Reds’ Yasiel Puig had been traded to Cleveland, he nonetheless took his place in right field for the top of the ninth. Former Pirate Jared Hughes took the mound and his first pitch hit Starling Marte squarely on the buttocks, resulting in the ejection of Hughes and acting manager Freddy Benavides.
Amir Garrett, who’d made threatening comments towards the Pirates earlier in the year, came on in relief of Hughes and after a single by Colin Moran served up a massive three-run pinch-homer to Jose Osuna.
As soon as Kevin Newman grounded out to first base, the home plate umpire tossed Garrett from the game and he responded by sprinting to the Pirates dugout, apparently in search of Trevor Williams, who later was reported to have already been ejected, presumable for comments made from the bench.
As soon as Garrett started swinging his fists at Williams, several Pirates surrounded him and Osuna landed a punch to the back of Garrett’s head. The ejected manager Bell returned to the field and into the scrum, where he was tackled to the ground by Pirates’ hitting coach Rick Eckstein, who sported a cut cheek after calm was restored. Puig, who reportedly wasn’t even a member of the Reds anymore, was especially vocal as he searched the crowd for Pirates players to take on.
The Reds’ Garrett and Puig and the Pirates’ Chris Archer, Kyle Crick and Francisco Cervelli were ejected.
Geoff Hartlieb came on for the bottom of the ninth and fortunately didn’t buzz and Reds’ batters, allowing a run on a walk and two singles in the midst of three strikeouts, as the umpire further enlarged his strike zone, trying to get the game to a close.
Tempers permitting, the three-game series is scheduled to conclude at 12:35 p.m. Eastern on Wednesday as the Pirates’ rookie Dario Agrazal (2-1, 3.24) faces the Reds’ Luis Castillo (9-4, 2.71)