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Bullpen Falters as Goldschmidt, Carlson Push Cardinals Past Pirates



The Pittsburgh Pirates lost their seventh straight game, 7-5, as the St. Louis Cardinals mounted a late-inning comeback at Busch Stadium on Monday, June 13.

The Pirates welcomed lefty Zack Thompson, St. Louis’ 2019 first-round pick, to the big leagues with five runs charged across five innings in his first career start. 

Mitch Keller built on his solid start to June, pitching 5.1 innings and giving up two runs. Pittsburgh’s bullpen couldn’t back him, however, as the Cardinals roared back to life with five runs in the sixth.

Shortstop Diego Castillo opened the scoring with a solo shot in the second, punishing a 1-2 fastball up in the zone.

Thompson unraveled in the fifth. Ke’Bryan Hayes capped a string of three singles with an RBI knock of his own. First baseman Michael Chavis, who hit a grand slam at Busch Stadium in April, made his presence known once again with a three-run blast that made it 5-0.

Cardinals first baseman Paul Goldschmidt led off the bottom of the sixth with an RBI double. Left fielder Tyler O’Neill moved him to third with a single that prompted Derek Shelton to give Keller the hook. 

Left-hander Anthony Banda entered and allowed three consecutive hits, including a two-run double by Cardinals’ rookie Brendan Donovan, and a three-run opposite-field blast by center fielder Dylan Carlson that tied the game.

St. Louis’ bullpen took over from there, retiring nine batters in a row to end the game.

Goldschmidt gave the Cardinals a 6-5 lead in the seventh with a solo shot off Chris Stratton.

Second baseman Yu Chang, who made a pair of sensational defensive plays earlier in the game, made a missed catch error in the eighth that allowed Carlson to score an insurance run.

The loss moves the Pirates to 24-35 on the season. They’ll play two against St. Louis on Tuesday, June 14, making up a rainout from the April series.

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