The Pittsburgh Pirates win streak is no more, as A.J. Burnett struggled out of the gate. The Nationals scored three runs in the first three innings of the game and they never looked back, beating the Pirates by a score of 4-1.
Going into the game, two factors seemed to – at the very least – give the Pirates an excellent chance at winning. Rookie Joe Ross was on the hill and Bryce Harper was to sit after a mild hamstring strain the night before. Yet the Nationals offense was shot out of the cannon early in this one, All in all, the Nationals would collect 14 hits off of Burnett, who gutted out 6.2 innings.
The Pirates had their chances but an excellent defensive play by Michael A. Taylor robbed Josh Harrison of an RBI in the fifth inning. As it was, the lone Pirates run came from Gregory Polanco‘s single in the top of the second that scored Jung Ho Kang from third to cut the lead to 2-1. That would be the Pirates lone offense.
What Stood Out
It was very encouraging to see Polanco contribute offensively. It was equally disturbing to see him shaken up after attempting to make a catch at the right field wall only to slam hard into it. Polanco was shaken up and left the game. His status remains up in the air.
Even with the bad outing, Burnett gave the team a chance to win. Burnett struck out eight batters on the night.