PITTSBURGH — Zach Thompson had another losing outing Sunday and the Pittsburgh Pirates lost to the Cincinnati Reds 9-5 at PNC Park.
Thompson (3-10) gave up three runs via two home runs to left-handed batters across five innings pitched.
The Pirates fell to 47-74 and the Reds improved to 48-71.
Cincinnati took a 1-0 lead on the fourth pitch of the game, as Jake Fraley hammered a knee-high curveball into the right-field stands.
The Pirates answered back in the bottom of the first with three singles, by right fielder Ben Gamel. Second baseman Rodolfo Castro followed that with a double down the left field line to make it 2-1.
First baseman Mike Moustakas put the Reds out in front, 3-2, with a two-out, two-run blast in the third.
Thompson gave up a single and a walk in the fifth but escaped thanks to a 4-3 double play turned by Castro.
Manny Bañuelos relieved Thompson in the sixth and issued a pair of walks to TJ Friedl and Aristides Aquino. A sacrifice bunt moved them into scoring position, and Fraley hit a long single off the Clemente Wall in right field to score both. Jonathan India tripled him home, and a Donovan Solano single made it 7-2 after just one out.
The Pirates answered back with three runs in the bottom of the sixth to make it 7-5. Left fielder Tucupita Marcano hit a two-run double to chase Reds starter Mike Minor (2-10, 6.44 ERA) from the game with two outs in the sixth. Catcher Jason Delay hit an RBI single to give Minor a final line of five earned runs across 5.2 innings pitched.
Solano and center fielder Nick Senzel helped the Reds make it 9-5 in the eighth with a pair of RBI singles charged to Colin Holderman.
Reliever Cam Vieaux, whose contract was selected from Triple-A Indianapolis this morning, pitched 1.2 innings, striking out two and allowing one hit.
Meanwhile, the Reds bullpen allowed just one base runner—an eighth inning walk by Greg Allen—across the final three innings.
Up next for the Buccos is a home series with Atlanta, beginning at 7:05pm on Monday, August 22. The Pirates haven’t announced their starter.