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Three-run homer in seventh bounces Bucs

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The Pirates lost a tough one to their cross-state rival.

MLB: Pittsburgh Pirates at Philadelphia Phillies Kyle Ross-USA TODAY Sports

The Pittsburgh Pirates held a 6-5 lead after Wilmer Difo’s two-run homer in the top of the seventh in what had been a back and forth contest most of the night, and the Bucs seemed poised to bring the win home with the bullpen, typically one of the team’s strengths this year, ready to close things down.

Alas, it was not meant to be, as the Philadelphia Phillies’ Didi Gregorious hit a three-run blast off of Chasen Shreve in the bottom of the seventh to put Philly up 8-6. Hector Neris and Ian Kennedy finished off the Buccos, with Kennedy notching his 26th save of the year.

Pittsburgh had a big fourth inning where they scored four runs on a double from Kevin Newman that scored Bryan Reynolds and Colin Moran, and Michael Perez hit a line drive single that scored Newman and Ben Gamel. Overall, the only multi-hit Pirates were Newman and Reynolds.

Sam Howard got his first ever start of his career in bullpen game for the Pirates, he threw just one inning, striking out the side. Miguel Yajure did the heavy lifting, going three and two thirds, but he gave up five hits and three earned runs, including long balls to Brad Miller and Phillies pitcher Kyle Gibson. Shelby Miller also gave up two runs in his only inning pitched.

The Buccos are back in action today at 4:05pm out in Philly.