Bailey Falter turned in his best start since joining the Pittsburgh Pirates and the offense exploded for 6 runs in the 7th inning leading to a 7-4 victory over the New York Mets
Following a lackluster performance in a 7-2 loss against the New York Mets on Monday night, the Pittsburgh Pirates bounced back in game two of the series on Tuesday night. With the win, the Bucs have evened the series and improved to 54-66 overall on the season.
Early in the game it appeared that the Pirates were going to end up burning themselves with wasted scoring opportunities. The Pirates were able to overcome this though with a big late inning to put themselves in position to earn a series victory on Wednesday afternoon.
Pirates waste early scoring opportunities
Through the first 3 innings Met starter David Peterson issued five batters, he allowed three hits, and hit a batter. Well... despite all of the base runners the Pirates scored just 1 run through the first 3 innings. That run came when Liover Peguero hit a solo home run in the 2nd inning, his 5th of the season.
After 3 innings the Pirates were just 1-for-6 with runners in scoring position. That lone hit was an infield single by Peguero that did not score a run. It did, however, load the bases with just one out in the 3rd inning, but was followed by back-to-back strikeouts to end the inning.
The Pirates left 7 runners on base through the first 3 innings against Peterson. 3 innings into the game the Pirates easily could have scored 3 or 4 runs, if not more. They could have had Peterson on the ropes if not completely knocked out of the game.
Unfortunately, they were not able to take advantage of Peterson's wildness. In 3.2 innings pitched Peterson issued six walks and hit a batter, none of those free base runners would come around to score.
Strong start from Bailey Falter
Making his third start since joining the Pittsburgh Pirates at the trade deadline lefty Bailey Falter turned in his best start yet. Facing a familiar foe, the ex-Phillie pitcher allowed just 1 run in 5.1 innings pitched.
Falter allowed just four hits, he walked a batter, and struck out five. The lone run he allowed came on a 1st inning solo home run off the bat of Brandon Nimmo. After that, Falter settled in for a strong start. He threw 52 of 82 pitches for strikes and generated eight swings-and-misses.
With Francisco Lindor on first base, the game tied at 1, and one out in the 6th inning, Colin Selby was summoned to face Pete Alonso. But in a big spot Selby responded by getting Alonso to hit into an inning ending double play on the first pitch he saw.
Pirate offense explodes in the 7th inning
The frustration of the first 6 innings of the night for the Pirate offense boiled over in the 7th inning. In the 7th inning the Pirates put 6 runs on the board to seize control of the game with a 7-1 lead, a lead they would not relinquish.
Andrew McCutchen drew his second walk of the night to start the inning and Connor Joe doubled. This was part of a big night for Joe who finished 2-3 with a pair of walks. With one out Peguero walked to load the bases.
Jack Suwinski pinch-hit for Josh Palacios, drawing a walk to bring in a run. Jared Triolo was hit by a pitch, there was a passed ball, and Jason Delay doubled. The scoring was capped off by a two-out triple from Bryan Reynolds that scored Delay to make it 7-1.
A team never wants to waste the scoring opportunities that the Pirates did early in the game. Thankfully, due to a big 7th inning, it did not come back to bite them against the Mets.
After ending the 6th inning, Selby returned to the mound to start the 7th inning and committed a cardinal sin for pitchers. With a 7-1 lead, Selby walked Francisco Alvarez to start the inning. Selby would allow a 2-run home run to DJ Stewart and a solo home run to Jonathan Arauz to cut the Pirate lead to 7-4.
After issuing a two-out walk, Selby was lifted for lefty Angel Perdomo. Perdomo did his job, striking out Nimmo to end the 7th inning. Perdomo was able to put the fire out and helped keep the Pirates in the lead.
Colin Holderman took the ball in the 8th inning. The former Met fired a 1-2-3 inning against his old team while striking out a pair. David Bednar allowed a base hit in the 9th, but retired the other three to close things out and pick up the save.
Johan Oviedo (4.42 ERA, 4.28 FIP) is set to start the series finale for the Pirates on Wednesday afternoon. Righty Tylor Megill (5.64 ERA, 5.08 FIP) is slated to start for the Mets. First pitch from Citi Field is scheduled for 12:35 PM ET.