When the going gets tough, the tough get going. The Pittsburgh Pirates came through in the clutch in the ninth inning as big brother Joshua Palacios hit a two-run go-ahead homer.
Palacios’ seventh homer on the season gave the Pirates a 7-6 win over the Cardinals, giving them a chance to sweep two series in a row on Sunday.
In addition, Palacios came in a pinch-hit situation as he came on for Connor Joe.
The Pirates got off to a bad start early in the game against the Cardinals. In the bottom of the second, Wilson Contreras attempted a bunt and appeared to get hit on the hand.
Despite the Pirates’ appeals, the umpires ruled Contreras didn’t offer at the pitch and gave him first base.
With runners on first and second, Tyler O’Neil blasted a hanging changeup from Thomas Hatch, which resulted in a three-run homer.
The Pirates chipped away in the fourth inning with an RBI triple from Connor Joe, making it 3-1. In the next inning, Bryan Reynolds and Andrew McCutchen hit RBI singles, tying the game up at three apiece.
The Cardinals quickly took the lead right back in the bottom of the fifth after Lars Nootbaar blasted his 13th homer of the season on a 1-1 pitch from Bailey Falter.
The Pirates came firing back in the sixth inning with an RBI double from Miguel Andujar and an RBI single from Ji-Hwan Bae, giving the Pirates a 5-4 lead.
In the bottom of the seventh, the Pirates sent in Colin Selby. A hanging sinker down the middle to Tommy Edman gave the Cardinals a lead-off base runner for Jordan Walker.
In a 1-0 count, Walker blasted another hanging sinker down the middle for a two-run homer. That homer was Walker’s 13th of the season, giving the Cardinals a 6-5 lead.
With one out in the ninth inning, Andrew McCutchen came to the plate with a chance to hit his 300th career homer. With Drew VerHagen on the mound, he hit McCutchen, giving way to Palacios.
In a 3-1 count, the man from Brooklyn blasted a 420 ft bomb to right center field, giving the Pirates a permanent 7-6 lead. In addition, Palacios’ brother, Richie Palacios watched the 104.8 mph bomb from the Cardinals dugout.
Star of the Game
I don’t think anyone will argue that Josh Palacios deserves the player of the game after blasting a two-run, pinch hit, go-ahead home run.
- Walker’s homer was the first homer Selby has given up since Aug. 15 against the New York Mets. In that game, Selby allowed two homers.
- Saturday’s game now marks five straight appearances where Falter has given up at least one home run. Falter’s last appearance where he didn’t give up a homer was Aug. 5 against Milwaukee.
- Palacios’ pinch hit homer gave Cody Bolton his first ever major league win.
- The Pirates extended their winning streak to five games.
The Pittsburgh Pirates (63-73) and the St. Louis Cardinals (58-78) finish up their three-game series Sunday afternoon. The Pirates have a chance to sweep the series with RHP Johan Oviedo (8-13, 4.20 ERA) facing LHP Zach Thompson (3-5, 3.92 ERA). Will Andrew McCutchen hit his 300th in St. Louis?