The Pittsburgh Pirates dropped their fifth game in a row, slipping to 4-21 since the All-Star Break and 48-66 on the year. The Milwaukee Brewers offense got out of the gate early and kept their foot on the pedal, finishing off the series sweep by a score of 8-3.
Pirates right-handed starter Trevor Williams started off the game with a promising strikeout and a very weak groundout before a two-out, two-strike double by Mike Moustakas. Rookie Keston Hiura took advantage of the extended inning by crushing a 1-1 offering the other way. A young Pirates fan made a nice catch on the dinger, and consequently hucked the ball into the Allegheny River. It was 2-0 Brewers in the first.
Ryan Braun, after receiving his typical chorus of boos from the Pittsburgh faithful, led off the top of the second inning with a triple that rattled around in the right field corner. Ben Gamel didn’t wait long to drive him in with a deep sacrifice fly to center field. That was the only damage Williams allowed in the second inning, but the scoreboard quickly read a deflating 3-0 in favor of the away team. Meanwhile, another lefty started off strong against the Buccos, as Drew Pomeranz worked through two hitless innings quickly, striking out three batters in the process.
The fun didn’t end there. A single by Yasmani Grandal, a double by Hiura, and a single by Eric Thames plated two more runs for the Brew Crew in the top of the third inning. The Pirates showed some fight in the bottom of that frame when Jacob Stallings roped a missile over the left field wall for a solo home run. When the dust settled on the first third of the contest, it was 5-1 Milwaukee.
Righty reliever Junior Guerra entered for Pomeranz to pitch in the bottom of the fourth inning, which was a welcomed change for the Pirates, but the Bucs couldn’t manage to cash in during his two innings of work. Meanwhile, the Brewers offense wasn’t done. Keston Hiura swatted another homer, this time a solo shot to deep center in the fifth inning. Parker Markel entered for Trevor Williams in the sixth inning, and a jam shot double by Lorenzo cain scored two runs to make it 8-1 Brewers. Markel loaded the bases after that, but avoided further damage with a strikeout against Thames.
The Bucs tacked on a couple more runs in the bottom of the seventh inning to cut the lead to five. Stallings walked, and after Kevin Newman reached on an error (the fourth in the game between the two teams), Bryan Reynolds singled to score a run. Starling Marte followed with a two-out, ground ball single of his own to make the score 8-3. After a quiet eighth and ninth inning, that score would hold true. Felipe Vazquez came in and struck out the side in the top of the ninth, and one can only hope he can keep his spirits high to pith this well next year.
The Bucs will limp into another off day on Thursday before heading to St. Louis to start another divisional series on Friday at 8:15 pm Eastern time. The starters are currently listed as Chris Archer and Dakota Hudson.