Pittsburgh Pirates Lose for the Ninth Time in Ten Tries


On Saturday afternoon the Pittsburgh Pirates lost to the Cincinnati Reds knocking them to 1-9 in their last ten games

The Pittsburgh Pirates are now 68-81 this season. This includes being a miserable 6-12 against the last place Cincinnati Reds this season. Furthermore, the Pirates are now just three games ahead of the Reds for staying out of the basement in the division.

Ivan Nova started for the Pirates. Nova was in desperate need for a strong start. Meanwhile, the also struggling Sal Romano started for the Reds. Nova turned in the strong start he needed, however, the Pirates would lose to the Reds by a score of 2-1.

Nova retired the first 11 batters he faced before allowing a two-out single to Joey Votto in the bottom of the fourth inning. However, Votto would be picked off first base via a great throw from Elias Diaz to end the inning.

Cincinnati starting pitcher Sal Romano had been awful this season. However, on Saturday he was far from it.

Jordan Luplow singled in the first inning, Andrew McCutchen singled in the fourth inning, and Elias Diaz doubled in the fifth. Romano would strand each of these runners, though.

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Ivan Nova’s success continued through six innings. Through the game’s first six innings he faced the minimum. Then in the bottom of the seventh inning, the Reds would get on the board.

To start the inning Jesse Winker hit his sixth career home run. This gave the Reds a 1-0 lead. This was followed by a Zack Cozart double. With one out, Nova would issue a walk to Eugenio Suarez.

After walking Suarez Nova exited the game with what the Pirates would call right calf discomfort. Dan Runzler was then called upon to replace Nova on the mound.

Runzler allowed a single to Scooter Gennett that scored Cozart, making the score 2-0 Reds. On the play, Suarez was thrown out trying to go to third base. Runzler then struck out Scott Schebler to end the inning.

Saturday was the best outing Ivan Nova has had in a long time. In 6 1/3 innings pitched he allowed two runs on three hits, a walk, a solo home run, and he struck out six.

As for Sal Romano, Saturday was the best start of his Major League career. In a career-high eight innings pitched, Romano kept the Pirates scoreless on just five hits allowed. He did not walk a batter and he whiffed six.

After Dovydas Neverauskas pitched a scoreless bottom of the eighth inning, the Pirates took their final hacks against Kevin Shackelford in the top of the ninth inning.

With one out in the inning Andrew McCutchen hit a solo home run. His 26th blast of the season cut the Cincinnati lead to 2-1. David Freese would draw a two-out walk, giving Gregory Polanco the chance to play hero.

With the left-handed hitting Polanco representing the go-ahead run, Cincinnati manager Bryan Price removed Shackelford from the game and replaced him with left-handed pitcher Cody Reed. Reed would get Polanco to ground out to end the game, giving the Reds a 2-1 victory.

While the Pirates lost on Saturday, it was great to see a strong start out of Ivan Nova. This was a start that Nova was desperate to have. Hopefully, Nova has found something that he can build off of the rest of this month and heading into 2018.

Next: Should the Bucs Move Glasnow to the Bullpen?

At 1:10 tomorrow afternoon the Pittsburgh Pirates will attempt to avoid a series sweep. Gerrit Cole will make the start for the Pirates, while Bryan Price and the Reds will hand the ball to struggling rookie Robert Stephenson.