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Pirates Bats Silenced in 4-0 Loss to Reds

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Connor Overton made the start for the Reds on Thursday night at PNC Park against the Pirates. The Bucs had virtually no answer against the right-hander, and the Reds defeated the Pirates 4-0.

Overton walked four and only struck out one, but the Pirates managed just three hits — all singles, and didn’t score against him. The Pirates did make some hard contact against Overton, but weren’t able to do any damage.

Pittsburgh threatened in the first when they had two runners aboard with only one out, but Daniel Vogelbach bounced into a fielder’s choice and Yoshi Tsutsugo bounced out to end the inning.

The Reds scored the game’s first run when Tyler Stephenson singled in Mike Moustakas following a Moustakas double. Stephenson extended the Reds lead to 2-0 with a solo home run to left a couple innings later.

Those were the only two ones the Reds got against JT Brubaker, who turned in another strong start. He worked five innings, allowed the two runs on four hits, two walks and three strikeouts.

Cam Alldred came into the game in relief of Brubaker and worked a 1-2-3 sixth inning before allowing a leadoff single Tyler Naquin to begin the seventh. He struck out Stephenson for his first big league strikeout for the second out in the sixth.

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The Reds added on in the eighth inning off of Duane Underwood Jr., who was making his first appearance since coming off the injured list. Colin Moran beat the shift for an RBI-single and Tyler Naquin followed with a run-scoring double off the Clemente Wall.

Ben Gamel collected two more hits, giving him his sixth multi-hit game in 10 contests this month.

The Pirates and Reds will meet again on Friday night. Mitch Keller (0-4, 6.11 ERA) will start for the Pirates against Tyler Mahle (1-4, 6.46 ERA).

Takeaways 

  • Major RISP Issues: After going 0 for 3 in this game with runners in scoring position, the Pirates are in the midst of a stretch of going 6 for 55 (.109) with runners in scoring position dating back to their doubleheader against the Tigers in Detroit. Entering play with RISP, the Pirates ranked 29th in average (.191), tied for 28th in on-base percentage (.287), tied for 29th in slugging (.298) and 28th in OPS (.585). It’s pretty remarkable the Pirates have managed a 4-5 record over that span. 
  • Bru’s Been Pitching Better: After his five innings of work in this one, Brubaker has a 3.91 ERA (10er/23ip) over his last five stars dating back to Apr. 19. He’s picked up 26 strikeouts over that span (10.2 K/9). The best sign for Brubaker is he only allowed three homers in those five starts and has only allowed four on the season. Last year, Brubaker served up 28 homeruns, tied for the third most in the National League
  • Month of May: Gamel entered May with a .224 batting average and a .629 OPS. 10 games later, Gamel is batting .299 with an OPS of .819. He’s batting .410 this month (16 for 39), has six extra-base hits (four doubles, one triple, one homer) and has driven in seven runs. He has recorded at least one hit in eight of his 10 games in May and has reached base safely in nine contests on the month.
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