The Pittsburgh Pirates opened their series against the Cincinnati Reds with a 7-5 win. Four solo home runs helped put Pittsburgh over the top in a back-and-forth affair that saw five lead changes.
Starter Andre Jackson loaded the bases with two outs in the first, but kept the Reds off the board with a groundball out.
Miguel Andújar doubled to begin the second, but inexplicably stayed put when Jared Triolo roped a single to left field. Instead of scoring an early run, the Pirates ended up empty-handed as Reds’ starter Andrew Abbott struck out the side.
Cincinnati took a 1-0 lead in the bottom of the frame. Elly De La Cruz singled, stole second and third, and scored on a sacrifice fly from Jonathan India.
Ke’Bryan Hayes tied the game with a leadoff homer in the fourth. Henry Davis put Pittsburgh ahead 2-1 with a solo shot of his own to begin the fifth: Reds manager David Bell pulled Abbott one batter later.
Cincinnati plated a pair in the home half of the inning via a groundout and an infield single. The Pirates reclaimed the lead 4-3 with home runs from Jared Triolo and Endy Rodríguez as a track meet began to develop.
Sewickley native and Reds’ center fielder TJ Friedl hit a two-run homer in the bottom of the sixth. Again the lead didn’t last, as Bryan Reynolds hit an RBI single and later scored via error on an Andújar fielder’s choice.
The Pirates loaded the bases in the ninth, making it 7-5 on a sacrifice fly from Jack Suwinski.
David Bednar entered for the save, allowing the first two batters he faced to reach. A double play and a strikeout helped him retire the side, picking up his 37th save of the season.
The ninth-inning run, much needed insurance in the back-and-forth contest.
Star of the Game:
Triolo, who went 2-for-3 with two walks and a homer.
Stat of Interest:
After just one home run in his first 40 games. Triolo now has two home runs in his past five.
- Hayes’ 15th home run of the year more than doubles his previous season high (7).
- Pittsburgh’s playoff hopes remain alive—albeit negligible—with the win: a loss would’ve eliminated them from postseason contention.
- Hayes has two home runs in the past four games, both to the opposite field.
Pittsburgh’s series with the Reds continues at 6:40pm Saturday. The Pirates haven’t announced a starter yet, while Cincinnati will send right-hander Connor Phillips (1-0, 5.74 ERA) to the mound.