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Dazed and Confused: Pirates Strike Out 20 Times in 7-3 Loss to Mets

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An eighth-inning collapse cost the Pittsburgh Pirates as the Mets rallied for a 7-3 win Sunday and a sweep of the four-game series at Citi Field.

With the Pirates leading 3-2, Tomas Nido lead the inning off with a single off Robert Stephenson. Nido was then replaced by the speedy Terrance Gore.

Left-hander Manny Banuelos then entered the game to face lefty Brandon Nimmo.

Gore stole second base after an errant throw by Jason Delay went into center field, allowing Gore to advance to third base with no outs.

The Pirates then experienced a total meltdown.

Nimmo blooped a single to left-center, giving the Mets a 4-3 lead.

When the dust settled, the Mets scored three more times, giving them a four-run edge.

Johan Oviedo had a less than stellar start Sunday, allowing nine baserunners, including four walks in four innings.

One of those walks happened in the bottom of the second against Jeff McNeil with the bases loaded. Oviedo casually threw four straight balls, and they weren’t even close.

During Oviedo’s outing, the Mets scored three runs, and at the time, it seemed like it was an insurmountable lead with Jacob deGrom pitching.,

Oneil Cruz did get the game started in the top of the first with a leadoff double after getting the count full.

Cruz’s double off of deGrom was just the second time in the 2022 season, deGrom allowed a leadoff hit.

Cruz had the other leadoff hit Sept. 7.

After the Cruz double, the Pirates were flailing left and right against the savvy veteran for 13 strikeouts and, at one point, 15 straight outs leading into the sixth inning.

With the Pirates down 3-0 in the sixth, Zack Collins started off the inning with the Pirates’ second hit of the game.

Delay hit a bloop single after forcing nine pitches out of deGrom.

Nearing 100 pitches, Mets manager Buck Showalter decided to let deGrom face Cruz. It did not end well for deGrom and company.

On a 2-2 count, Cruz blasted his 17th homer, and just like that, the game was tied at three runs apiece.

Otherwise, the Pirates’ offense was dismal.

The Pirates struck out 20 times, which set a franchise record for most strikeouts in a nine-inning game. The major league record is 21.

The Pittsburgh Pirates stay in New York as they face the Yankees on Tuesday night for a two-game series after having Monday off.

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