Pittsburgh Pirates: Late Inning Woes in Game Two Ruins Chance at Doubleheader Sweep of the Cincinnati Reds

On Sunday, the Pittsburgh Pirates split a doubleheader at PNC Park against the Cincinnati Reds

Aug 13, 2023; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates manager Derek Shelton (17) reacts to home
Aug 13, 2023; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Pirates manager Derek Shelton (17) reacts to home / Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports
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Mitch Keller turned in a strong start in game one and multiple Young Bucs made noise all day long, but late inning woes in game two cost the Pittsburgh Pirates a doubleheader sweep of the Cincinnati Reds

Following severe storms in and around the Pittsburgh area on Saturday night postponed the scheduled game between the Pittsburgh Pirates and Cincinnati Reds, the two teams played a doubleheader on Sunday. This doubleheader started with a 4-2 Pirate victory, a victory that improved the team to 53-64 on the season.

Strong Mitch Keller start

In game one Mitch Keller started for the Pirates keeping in line with his originally scheduled start for Sunday afternoon. After struggling in recent starts, Keller put a foot down and turned in a strong start. A strong start in which he pitched better than the final line indicated.

Keller pitched 6 innings allowing 2 runs, 1 earned, on five hits, three walks, and seven strikeouts. Keller threw 61 of 91 pitches for strikes and generated 12 swings-and-misses. While an Alika Williams error in the 5th inning led to the unearned run, Keller was also hurt by some poor defense in the 4th inning when he allowed a run. With better defense, Keller easily could have fired 6 scoreless.

Offense rallies in the 7th inning

Entering the 7th inning the Pirates were trailing 2-1. The lone run came in the 5th inning when Williams singled home Henry Davis, helping to make up for his error in the top half of the inning. In the 7th inning, however, the Pirate offense would explode for 3 runs to take the lead and not look back.

Liover Peguero drew a walk to start the inning. It was part of a big day for Peguero, as well as a rare walk. This was just the second walk Peguero has drawn since being promoted to the majors in July. After Endy Rodriguez also drew a walk, Jared Triolo stepped to the plate. Pinch hitting for Jason Delay, Triolo would launch his 1st MLB home run.

Triolo's 3-run shot was just his second career extra base hit. It took the Pirates from trailing 2-1 and put them in the lead 4-2. This would go on to be the final score as the Pirate bullpen would shut things down.

Bullpen shuts the door

Speaking of the Pirate bullpen...

It started in the 7th inning when Angel Perdomo relieved Keller and fired a scoreless inning including a strikeout. In the 8th inning Colin Holderman struck out a pair while working around a hit. Then in the 9th inning, David Bednar allowed a one-out triple but stranded the runner with the help of a strikeout. With that, Bednar earned his 24th save of the season.