Pittsburgh Pirates fall 3-1 in A.J. Burnett’s Final Regular Season Start


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The Pittsburgh Pirates fell to the Cincinnati Reds 3-1 in the final regular season start for A.J. Burnett.

In the top of the first, Eugenio Suarez singled with one out then advanced to third on a throwing error by A.J. Burnett. Joey Votto grounded out to score Suarez. Brandon Phillips came to the plate and singled then stole second. Todd Frazier doubled to score Phillips and give the Reds a 2-0 lead.

In the bottom of the first, Josh Harrison led off with a triple and then scored on a Gregory Polanco ground out. Aramis Ramirez walked and Starling Marte singled to give the Pirates two on with two outs. Michael Morse would strike out to end the inning and strand the runners.

Neither team would score again until the top of the seventh when Adam Duvall homered off of A.J. Burnett to give the Reds a 3-1 lead. Burnett would walk Tucker Barnhart, then strikeout Skip Schumaker. Jason Bourgeois would walk with two outs and end Burnett’s night. A.J. Burnett would allow three runs on five hits in six and two thirds innings. He walked four and struck out nine. Jared Hughes would take his place and get Suarez to ground out and end the inning.

Bobby LaFromboise would face Joey Votto in the eighth and get him to ground out. Joe Blanton would take over on the mound and give up a single to Brandon Phillips. Blanton then picked Phillips off at first before striking out Todd Frazier. Arquimedes Caminero would pitch the ninth and get Jay Bruce to ground out to start the inning. Then Duvall flew out to center and Barnhart lined out to Jordy Mercer.

Aroldis Chapman would hit Starling Marte with a pitch in the ninth. However, the Pirates wouldn’t get another hit and Chapman would pickup his thirty-third save of the season.

What Stood Out

A.J. Burnett received a standing ovation and curtain call when he was removed from the game in the seventh inning. Many fans were dressed in Batman gear as part of #BATOUTPNC

The Pirates bullpen had another good night. Hughes, LaFromboise, Blanton and Caminero pitched the final two and a third innings and only allowed one hit.

More from Pirates News

With the win, the Reds broke their thirteen game losing streak.

The Chicago Cubs defeated the Milwaukee Brewers 1-0 behind six shut out innings by Kyle Hendricks. The final day of the season is now very important in the Wild Card standings.

What’s Next

It all comes down to the final game of the season to determine home field for the National League Wild Card Game. The Pirates control their own destiny. They will secure home field with a win or a Chicago Cubs loss. The Pittsburgh Pirates will send J.A. Happ to the mound while the Cincinnati Reds counter with Josh Smith.