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The Win Streak Ends at One, Bucs Drop Series Finale to Reds 4-1

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MLB: Pittsburgh Pirates at Cincinnati Reds David Kohl-USA TODAY Sports

The Pittsburgh Pirates lost the series finale against the host Cincinnati Reds on Wednesday afternoon by a count of 4-1. It was a relatively quiet game, featuring the ace of the Reds rotation pitching like one.

After the Bucs went quietly in the first, Jesse Winker hit right-handed starter Dario Agrazal’s first pitch over the left field wall for a quick 1-0 lead. Meanwhile, righty Luis Castillo allowed just one harmless hit through the first three innings for the Reds.

Eugenio Suarez got into the action in the bottom of the third inning, hitting a wall-scraper homer to left that had to be reviewed. It was his 29th round-tripper on the season, and it scored Winker, making it 3-0 Reds.

After Castillo struck out the side in the top of the fourth with a Josh Bell ground ball single mixed in, Agrazal allowed a single and hit two batters in the bottom of the frame to load the bases with two outs. The umpires huddled, but they chose not to eject the young pitcher. Hurdled pulled Agrazal from the game shortly after, and righty reliever Michael Feliz induced a Joey Votto flyout to escape the inning without any damage.

Following a two-out single by Elias Diaz in the top of the fifth, Corey Dickerson was called on to pinch-hit for Feliz. He grounded out in what turned out to be his final at-bat as a Pirate. Dickerson was traded minutes later to the Philadelphia Phillies.

Chris Stratton came on for two innings of successful relief for the Bucs, and Castillo continued to put in work. Through seven innings he had allowed just four scattered hits and struck out seven. In the bottom of the seventh the Reds struck again on an RBI single by rookie Nick Senzel, making it 4-0 in favor of Cincy.

The Bucs scored their lone run in the eighth inning after a lead-off single by Diaz and a double by pinch-hitter Jose Osuna chased Castillo from the game. Adam Frazier flew out softly to center field, but the Pirates’ rookie Bryan Reynolds came through with a sharp RBI groundout to the second baseman to break the scoring drought. Starling Marte would walk to give Bell an opportunity to tie the game with a two-out long ball, but the struggling slugger grounded out to first to end the threat, keeping it at 4-1 Reds.

Closer Raisel Iglesias dispatched the Bucs in the ninth without an issue, and the eventful series in Cincinnati came to a close. The Pirates will have a day off on Thursday, and they’ll start a home series against the New York Mets on Friday at 7:05 pm Eastern. Pittsburgh has not announced a probable starter yet, but the Mets have lefty Steven Matz penciled in. In case you tuned out the Bucs last weekend, he threw a complete game shutout against them at Citi Field on Saturday night... I was there.