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Pirates’ Bullpen Implodes in 7th in 9-3 Loss to Diamondbacks

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The Arizona Diamondbacks used a seven-run seventh inning to come from behind to defeat the Pittsburgh Pirates 9-3 at Chase Field in Phoenix on Thursday.

In the seventh, Arizona loaded the bases with nobody out after Pirates Chase De Jong plunked Gerlado Perdomo, who was attempting to bunt with two strikes.

Emmanunel Rivera put Arizona with a two-run double past the outstretched glove of third baseman Ke’Bryan Hayes. After the D-backs loaded the bases again, Daulton Varsho cleared them with a long double that banged high off the wall in center.

Jake McCarthy drove in another run with a groundout, putting Arizona ahead 9-3.

After being limited through the first three innings, the Pittsburgh Pirates were finally able to get to Diamondbacks starter Merrill Kelly in the fourth and put up a three spot.

Hayes beat a throw home from first after Tucupita Marcano chopped one to first baseman Christian Walker. Greg Allen followed with an RBI-single, and Oneil Cruz scored on the play. Allen then got caught in a rundown, allowing Marcano to score.

Hayes picked up two more hits in the game, giving him his second multi-hit efforts in his last three games. The Pirates third-baseman is having a solid August, hitting .297 (11 for 37) on the month.

The Diamondbacks answered in the home half of the inning when Rivera hit a long home run off of Brubaker to left-center. Carson Kelly added a two-out RBI-single.

Brubaker, who struggled in his last two starts, had a solid bounceback outing. He worked five innings, gave up the two runs on three hits and two walks and picked up six strikeouts.

The Pittsburgh Pirates head to San Francisco for a weekend series with the Giants beginning Friday night. Bryse Wilson (2-6, 5.86 ERA) will look to keep rolling for the Pirates. Carlos Rodon (10-6, 2.95 ERA) will get the ball for San Francisco.

Takeaways

  • Running Wild: Four different Pirates’ players recorded a stolen base — Hayes, Cruz, Allen and Josh VanMeter all successfully stole against the Kelly-Kelly battery. That came on the heels of the Pirates stealing three bases in the  6-4 win over the Diamondbacks on Wednesday night. The aggressiveness on the basepaths paid off, and helped the Pirates manufacture a couple runs.
  • Patience is a Virtue: Entering Thursday, Cruz had drawn just eight walks through his first 174 plate appearances to begin his career, a walk rate of just 4.6%. Cruz showed more patience at the plate in this one and drew a walk in his first two plate appearances against Kelly. It was the second time this year that Cruz drew multiple walks in a game.
  • Gotta Put ‘Em Away: All three of Rivera’s RBIs came when he was behind in the count 0-2. Brubaker hung a breaking ball and Rivera made him pay by launching one deep. Rivera’s go-ahead double off of Yerry De Los Santos in the seventh wasn’t a mistake pitch by any means, but Rivera was still able to get good wood on it.
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