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Pirates Blow Lead in 6th Inning, Fall 5-4 to Angels

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Luis Ortiz, Pittsburgh Pirates

PITTSBURGH — The Pittsburgh Pirates briefly built a two-run lead in the fifth only to fall back behind in the top of the sixth and were edged out 5-4 by the Los Angeles Angels on Wednesday afternoon at PNC Park.

The Pirates (17-21) had gone 18-straight innings without scoring a run before putting up a four-spot in the fifth inning.

Trailing by a pair, the Pirates loaded the bases with two outs against Angels starter José Soriano for Oneil Cruz.

Cruz drilled a bases-clearing double into the right-center gap. The Pirates’ shortstop finished the game 2 for 4 and is hitting .327 over his last 15 games. 

Connor Joe followed Cruz and fought one off into right field for a run-scoring single, giving the Pirates a 4-2 advantage.

The Pirates’ lead was short lived, however, as the Angels (14-23) came back with three runs in the top of the sixth to retake the lead. 

Los Angeles opened the inning with back-to-back hits off of left-hander Martín Pérez, which ended the starter’s day. 

Luis Ortiz entered the game in relief of Pérez and surrendered an RBI-single to Logan O’Hoppe and a Brandon Drury run-scoring double. Willie Calhoun’s sacrifice fly put the Angels back out in front by a run. 

Jo Adell opened the scoring with a solo home run off of Pérez in the third. Adell put the Angels ahead 2-0 with an RBI-single in the fifth. 

Pérez’s final line read five-plus innings, eight hits, four runs, no walks and five strikeouts. For the Angels, Soriano was tagged with four runs in 4.2 innings and struck out six. 

Adam Cimber (3-0) was credited with the win and Luis Ortiz (2-2) took the loss for the Pirates. Carlos Estévez collected his sixth save of the season. 

Aroldis Chapman struck out two batters in a scoreless seventh inning and passed Jesse Orosco for the second-most strikeouts by a left-handed reliever all-time. Chapman now has 1,170 strikeouts in his career and trails only Billy Wagner, who has 1,196. 

Up Next

The Pirates have an off day on Thursday before starting a home series with the Chicago Cubs on Friday night. Neither team has announced a starting pitcher. First pitch: 6:40.

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