Pittsburgh Pirates series review vs. Reds

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Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

Game Two: A.J. Burnett (9-6, 3.15ERA) vs. Brandon Finnegan (1-2, 5.09ERA)

Result: Pirates lose 3-1

Winning Pitcher: Brandon Finnegan (2-2, 4.18ERA)

Losing Pitcher: A.J. Burnett (9-7, 3.18ERA)

Save: Aroldis Chapman (33, 1.63ERA)

  • What went right:
    • Josh Harrison had two hits from the lead-off spot. He went 2-3 with a walk and a run scored.
    • Gregory Polanco went 1-3 and had the lone Pirates’ RBI.
    • Starling Marte went 1-3.
    • A.J. Burnett was terrific in his final regular season start. He overcame a rough first inning and pitched into the seventh. Overall he went 6.2 innings, allowed three runs on five hits and struck out nine. He left to a loud ovation and did a curtain call to the roar of the appreciative crowd. It was an awesome moment and Burnett deserved every second of it.
  • What went wrong:
    • The Pirates could not figure out Brandon Finnegan. After scoring in the first inning, he completely shut them down. He went six innings, allowed one run on three hits and struck out six.
    • Andrew McCutchen went 0-4 with two strikeouts and looked very bad against Finnegan’s cut fastball.
    • Brandon Phillips had his usual solid game against the Pirates. He went 2-3 with a run scored.
    • A.J. Burnett committed a throwing error on a pick-off attempt, which set up the game’s first run.

The Pirates did not play well at all and because of the Cubs victory, they went into game 162 still needing a victory to clinch home field in the Wildcard game. For the second year in a row, all 162 games meant something for the Pirates. They needed a win in the final game to make home field HAPPen.

Next: Game Three: Happ vs. Smith