PITTSBURGH – Jack Suwinski and Ke’Bryan Hayes hit home runs and Luis Ortiz pitched six solid innings to lead the Pittsburgh Pirates over the National League Central-leading Milwaukee Brewers 4-2 on Monday night at PNC Park in the opener of a three-game series.
Suwinski hit a two-run blast in the fourth inning off Corbin Burnes (9-8) to draw the Pirates into a 2-2 tie. A solo shot by Hayes to center field an inning later put the Pirates (64-74) in front as they won for the sixth time in their last seven games.
Ortiz (4-4) allowed two runs and five hits while winning his second straight outing. The rookie struck out four and walked three.
David Bednar pitched a 1-2-3 ninth inning for his 32nd save in 35 opportunities.
Hayes also hit a triple while Andrew McCutchen had two doubles for the Pirates.
The Brewers (76-61) had their lead in the division cut to 2.5 games over the Chicago Cubs. Rookie Andruw Monestario had two hits and Burnes gave up four runs in six innings.
The Brewers put runners on first and second in the seventh inning while trailing 4-2. However, Pirates rookie reliever Carmen Mlodzinski escaped the jam by striking out Carlos Santana.
STAR OF THE GAME
McCutchen scored on Suwinski’s home run and then drove in a run with his second double in the fifth inning that pushed the Pirates’ lead to 4-2.
STAT OF INTEREST
Hayes is hitting .343 (34 for 99) in his last 24 games with six doubles, two triples and seven home runs.
–McCutchen left the game with left Achillies tendon tightness after running the bases in the fifth inning. McCutchen is still looking for his 300th career home run as he has gone 42 plate appearances since connecting on Aug. 22 against the St. Louis Cardinals.
–Bednar has 15 saves since the All-Star break, second-most in the major leagues in that span behind the Cubs’ Adbert Alzolay, who has 16.
–Liover Peguero’s five-game hitting streak ended as he went 0 for 3.
–Connor Joe is 1 for 25 (.040) in his last seven games after going 0 for 4.
–Santana went 0 for 4 in his first game at PNC Park since the Pirates traded him to the Brewers in July.
–Right-hander Hunter Stratton had his contract selected from Triple-A Indianapolis prior to the game and left-hander Rob Zastryzny was designated for assignment. Stratton’s first appearance for the Pirates will mark his major-league debut.
The teams meet again at 6:35 p.m. on Tuesday. Brandon Woodruff (3-1, 2.70) will pitch for the Brewers while the Pirates haven’t announced a starter.