Pittsburgh Pirates Drop Second Straight Against Dodgers

PITTSBURGH, PA - AUGUST 22: Jameson Taillon
PITTSBURGH, PA - AUGUST 22: Jameson Taillon /

On Tuesday night, the Pittsburgh Pirates were defeated by the Los Angeles Dodgers for a second consecutive night

The Pittsburgh Pirates August struggles continued on Tuesday night. The Bucs were defeated by the Los Angeles Dodgers on Tuesday night by a score of 8-5 to fall to 9-12 this month, and 60-66 overall on the season.

With the loss on Tuesday night the Pirates are now 0-5 against the 89-35 Dodgers this season. Also, this loss knocked the Pirates to just 2-4 through the first six games of this current eight game homestand.

Just as they did in Monday night’s loss the Pirates held an early lead on Tuesday night that they could not hold. Adding to the Pirate woes on Tuesday night was the continued struggles of Jameson Taillon who has now allowed at least five earned runs in four of his last six starts.

The Los Angeles Dodgers quickly jumped out to a lead on Tuesday night.

Chris Taylor hit his 30th double of the season to start the game. Pirate starting pitcher Jameson Taillon would then record three consecutive groundball outs. However, the first one move Taylor to third base and the second one scored him to make it 1-0 Dodgers.

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In the bottom of the 1st inning the Pirates threatened to tie the game when Adam Frazier worked a one-out walk and Josh Bell collected a two-out single off Los Angeles starter Brock Stewart. However, Josh Harrison would fly out to center field to end the inning with the Dodgers still ahead 1-0.

With one out in the top of the 2nd inning Yasiel Puig hit a single. This was followed by back-to-back walks by Adrian Gonzalez and Logan Forsythe to load the bases. Dodger pitcher Brock Stewart then blooped a single into left field to score Puig, making the score 2-0 Dodgers.

Chris Taylor then recorded a two-run single to make it 4-0 Dodgers. Taillon and the Pirates would then benefit from some good luck as Corey Seager lined out to Josh Bell and Bell turned it into a three unassisted double play to end the inning.

In the bottom of the 3rd inning the Pirates would get on the board. Jameson Taillon reached on an infield hit to start the inning and this was followed by Starling Marte‘s 4th home run of the season. This two-run shot by Marte cut the Dodger lead to 4-2.

Following the Marte home run, Adam Frazier drew his second walk of the game. Andrew McCutchen slashed a base hit into left-center field that put runners on the corners with no one out. Josh Bell then drew a walk to load the bases with no one out.

The Bell walk would bring Brock Stewart’s night to an end. Right-handed reliever Josh Ravin was then called upon by Dave Roberts to try and put out the fire that Stewart ignited.

Ravis would promptly allow a two-run double to Josh Harrison, this tied the game at 4. John Jaso then grounded out to first base where Adrian Gonzalez made a rare mistake by bobbling the ball. Gonzalez still retired Jaso, but his bobble allowed Josh Bell to score giving the Pirates a 5-4 lead.

Bell scoring closed the book on Stewart. In 2+ innings pitched he allowed five runs on four hits, four walks, and two strikeouts.

With McCutchen on third and no one out Elias Diaz struck out looking. The Dodgers then intentionally walked Jordy Mercer to get to Taillon who struck out to end the inning.

PITTSBURGH, PA – AUGUST 22: Chris Taylor
PITTSBURGH, PA – AUGUST 22: Chris Taylor /

Unfortunately, this Pirate lead did not last long. Taillon would walk Yasiel Puig to start the top of the 4th inning. Then with one out, Logan Forsythe drew his second walk of the night. In between these walks, Adrian Gonzalez hit a ground ball to Josh Bell that should have been a double play. However, due to Bell bobbling the ball the Pirates only got one out on the play and it would prove costly.

With two outs, Chris Taylor hit a ground ball to third base that should have ended the inning. However, Josh Harrison booted it allowing a run to score tying the game at 5. Taillon then got a groundout to end the inning. Had Bell turned the double play earlier in the inning, the Dodgers would not have scored.

Jameson Taillon labored through 5 innings of work on Tuesday night as his month long struggles continued. Taillon allowed five runs on a career-high five walks, five hits, and just one strikeout. In his last six starts he has now allowed 30 earned runs on 43 hits, 13 walks, and 27 strikeouts in 29 innings pitched.

After ex-Pirate Tony Watson retired his former teammates in order in the bottom of the 5th inning, Johnny Barbato entered for the Pirates in the top of the 6th inning. Unsurprisingly, things did not go well for Barbato.

After allowed a double to Adrian Gonzalez to start the inning, Barbato issued a walk to Logan Forsythe. Then with two outs, Corey Seager delivered a RBI single. This gave the Dodgers a 6-5 lead heading to the bottom of the 6th inning.

Tony Cingrani was the new Dodger pitcher in the bottom of the 6th inning. With one out, he allowed a single to Jordy Mercer. Pinch-hitter Jose Osuna then reached on a fielder’s choice, replacing Mercer at first base. Starling Marte then popped out to first base to end the inning.

In his first game back from Triple-A, Edgar Santana entered the game to pitch the top of the 7th inning. Just like Barbato’s return, Santana’s did not go well. After walking Curtis Granderson to start the inning, he allowed a one-out moon shot to Yasmani Grandal to make the score 8-5 Dodgers. He then retired the next three Dodger hitters, including a pair of home runs, to end the inning.

Santana would also pitch the top of the 8th inning for the Pirates. This inning went much smoother for Santana as he posted a zero, keeping the score at 8-5 Dodgers. Even with his struggles on Tuesday night, Edgar Santana still possesses electric stuff and has a bright future in the Pirate bullpen.

With one-out in the bottom of the 8th inning John Jaso drew his second walk of the game, this one off of Dodger reliever Josh Fields. Unfortunately, just as he did after Jaso’s first walk of the game, Elias Diaz would follow it up by hitting into a double play.

After Daniel Hudson pitched a scoreless top of the 9th inning, Kenley Jansen entered the game for the Dodgers in the bottom of the inning. Jansen showed why he is one of the best relievers in baseball as he reitred the Pirates in order to end the game in the form of an 8-5 Dodger victory.

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The 2017 season has been the season from hell for the Pittsburgh Pirates. Between Jung Ho Kang‘s issues, Starling Marte’s suspension, Jameson Taillon’s cancer diagnosis, the implosions of Daniel Hudson and Tony Watson, and Gregory Polanco‘s injury issues just about everything that can go wrong has.

It would be great to see this years version of the Pittsburgh Baseball Club rally to finish the season with a .500 or better record. Unfortunately, that is starting to look less and less likely by the game.

The third game of this series is scheduled for 7:05 on Wednesday night. Trevor Williams, who is coming off a rough start and who had his doors blown off by the Dodgers in his first start of the season back in May, will get the ball for the Pirates. Meanwhile, the Dave Roberts and the Dodgers will hand the ball to veteran lefty Rich Hill.