9th Inning Rally Comes Up Short In Pittsburgh Pirates Loss vs Mariners

PITTSBURGH, PA - SEPTEMBER 18: Dario Agrazal #67 of the Pittsburgh Pirates pitches during the first inning against the Seattle Mariners at PNC Park on September 18, 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images)
PITTSBURGH, PA - SEPTEMBER 18: Dario Agrazal #67 of the Pittsburgh Pirates pitches during the first inning against the Seattle Mariners at PNC Park on September 18, 2019 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Joe Sargent/Getty Images) /
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The Pittsburgh Pirates have now lost five games in a row

After a strong 13-7 20 game stretch, the Pittsburgh Pirates have now lost five games in a row. The most recent of which was a 4-1 loss at the hands of the Seattle Mariners on Wednesday night. This loss hands the Pirates a series loss against the M’s.

With the loss, the Pirates are now 21-43 since the All-Star Break. This dreadful stretch has dropped the team to 65-87 overall on the season.

Dario Agrazal got the start for the Pirates and struggled yet again. In 5 innings of work he allowed 4 runs on six hits, a walk, two home runs, and six strikeouts. In 14 games, 13 of which have been starts, this season Agrazal owns a 5.08 ERA and a 6.05 FIP.

In his 67 1/3 innings of work this season Agrazal has looked like the pitcher he was throughout the minor leagues. That is a pitcher that does not generate enough swings and misses, allows too much hard contact, and gives up too many home runs. Barring a major turnaround from Agrazal, he simply does not have the stuff to be a quality MLB starting pitcher.

Chris Stratton replaced Agrazal in the 6th inning. Stratton recorded a strikeout while firing a 1-2-3 inning. This was Stratton’s first inning of work since August 26th due to being on the inured list. Geoff Hartlieb then followed with a 1-2-3 7th inning for the Pirates, and Yacksel Rios pitched a scoreless 8th.

Thursday night the Pirate offense was shut down. Justin Dunn pitched as the opener for the Mariners and pitched 2 scoreless innings. Veteran lefty Tommy Milone then took the mound and proceeded to dominate the Pirates. Mile needed just 51 pitches to fir 4 scoreless innings.

Cole Tucker hit a pinch hit triple with one out in the bottom of the 8th inning. Kevin Newman then grounded out to third base to score Tucker, cutting the Mariner lead to 4-1. This also ended a 20 inning scoreless streak for the Pirate offense.

It was good to see Tucker remain hot at the plate. After this triple on Tuesday night Tucker is now 17-for-54 with seven doubles, three triples, five walks, and just 10 strikeouts in his last 60 MLB plate appearances. In the long run the Pirates best middle infield duo is still Tucker at shortstop and Newman at second base. So, it is great to see Tucker finishing the season strong.

With the team trailing 4-1, Colin Moran reached on a routine pop up to shallow right field that the Mariners botched and Jose Osuna smacked a single into right-center to put two men on for the Pirates with no one out. Following the back-to-back singles, Adam Frazier and Elias Diaz both hit 100+ MPH missiles to center field. However, Mariners center fielder Braden Bishop was able to haul in both balls. Kevin Kramer then flew out to left field to end the game.

Next. 2019 Has Been A Season From Hell. dark

The third and final game of this series is scheduled for 12:35 on Thursday afternoon. Joe Musgrove (4.52 ERA, 3.96 FIP) will make the start for the Pirates. Rookie lefty Yusei Kikuchi (5.46 ERA, 5.91 FIP) is scheduled to start for Seattle.

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