Pittsburgh Pirates Fall, Again, To The Cincinnati Reds
In frustrating fashion, the Pittsburgh Pirates lost to the Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday night
The Pittsburgh Pirates are now 3-4 this season. This is due to a very frustrating loss to the Cincinnati Reds on Tuesday night. With the loss, the Pirates will now have to win tomorrow in order to avoid being swept in this three-game series.
Cincinnati’s roster seems to be littered with bad hitters that terrorize the Pittsburgh Pirates. The two leaders of this brigade are Scooter Gennett and Billy Hamilton, and Gennett and Hamilton are maybe the two biggest reasons the Pirates lost on Tuesday night. Well, that, and another poor offensive performance. And these factors are what made Tuesday’s loss so frustrating.
Early on in the game on Tuesday night the Pittsburgh Pirates were flooding the basepaths with base runners. This was very similar to what they did early on in Monday night’s game. Unfortunately, just like in Monday’s game, the Pirates failed to take advantage of these opportunities.
In the top of the first Andrew McCutchen single with one out and then Gregory Polanco walked. However, both men would be stranded.
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In the bottom of the second inning, Jordy Mercer drew a two-out walk. Unfortunately, pitcher Jameson Taillon was up. But Mercer’s walk was still productive as it turned the lineup over.
Then in the bottom of the third inning, the Pittsburgh Pirates would strike. Starling Marte singled to lead off the inning, took second base on a wild pitch, and then went to third base on a groundout by Josh Bell.
With Marte on third base and just one out, Andrew McCutchen would strikeout looking. At this point, things were looking bleak. However, after Gregory Polanco drew a two-out walk, the Pirates executed a double steal. Polanco would steal second base, while Starling Marte stole home. This tied the game at 1.
Starling Marte’s steal of home was the first Pirates’ steal of home since 2015. The last time it happened, it was also executed by Starling Marte as part of a double steal. By the end of the third inning, Cincinnati started Rookie Davis had already thrown 73 pitches and walked four batters.
Unfortunately, the Reds would regain the lead on the top of the fourth inning. Jose Peraza doubled to lead off the inning. It was a double that would not have happened had Andrew McCutchen made a better throw from right field. A poor McCutchen throw drew Jordy Mercer off the bag and allowed Peraza to reach.
Jameson Taillon would then get Joey Votto to line out to left field and he struck out Adam Duvall. However, Peraza would then steal third base before coming around to score on a base hit by Eugenio Suarez. Votto’s line out was a big play in the inning, as Peraza wandered way too far off the bag and should have been doubled up, however, Gregory Polanco could not get a good grip on the ball and made a very poor throw.
This gave the Reds a 2-1 lead heading to the bottom of the fourth inning.
Jameson Taillon would plunk Rookie Davis in the right forearm with a pitch in the top of the fifth inning. This led to Davis being lifted for Tony Cingrani, who would pick up where the Cincinnati bullpen left off on Monday night as he posted a zero despite walking Andrew McCutchen.
With the help of some poor Reds defense, the Pirates tied the game in the bottom of the sixth inning. With two men on and one out, Jordy Mercer hit what should have been an easy inning-ending 5-4-3 double play. However, Scooter Gennett could not turn the double play keeping the inning alive.
Pinch-hitter Adam Frazier then grounded out to shortstop Jose Peraza. Peraza, however, would throw the ball over the head of Joey Votto. This allowed Frazier to reach, Francisco Cervelli to score, and tied the game at 2.
Frazier pinch-hitting spelled the end of the night for Jameson Taillon who made another strong start. In 6 innings of work, Taillon allowed two runs on four hits, one walk, he allowed a solo home run, and he struck out four batters.
On Tuesday night, Jameson Taillon did not have his best stuff. His fastball control escaped him at times. Despite this, he still pitched a very strong game. This is a sign of a great starting pitcher.
In the top of the seventh inning, the Pirates, unfortunately, gave the lead right back to Cincinnati. Scooter Gennett, one of the many Reds who is a poor hitter but kills the Pirates, doubled off of Juan Nicasio to lead off the inning. This was followed by Tucker Barnhart bunting him to third base.
This brought pinch hitter Arismendy Alcantra to the plate. Nicasio would strikeout Alcantra for the second out of the inning. Unfortunately for the Pirates, this brought Billy Hamilton to the plate. Despite being arguably the worst hitter in Major League Baseball, Hamilton continued to feast on Pirate pitching by collecting a go-ahead RBI single. This gave the Reds a 3-2 lead.
In the top of the eighth inning, Scooter Gennett would strike again. With two on and two outs, he hit a three-run home run off of Trevor Williams. This gave the Reds a 6-2 lead and put the game on ice.
Next: Minor League Roundup: April 10
Tuesday night’s loss was a very frustrating one. This is a game where the Pittsburgh Pirates had ample opportunities to earn a victory and failed to do so. Additionally, they allowed two very poor hitters to go a combined 4-for-9 with a home run and 4 RBIs.
Now, the Bucs will look to avoid the sweep tomorrow night. Ivan Nova will start for the Pirates and he will be opposed by Amir Garrett. Due to hockey, tomorrow’s game will not be broadcast on ROOT Sports. However, here at Rum Bunter, we will have you covered starting with first pitch at 7:05 PM.