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Rowdy Tellez’s Big Game Not Enough for Pirates in Loss to Blue Jays

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Pittsburgh Pirates' Rowdy Tellez (44) is introduced before the Pirates' home opener baseball game against the Baltimore Orioles in Pittsburgh, Friday, April 5, 2024. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

Rowdy Tellez had three hits and drove in four runs but it wasn’t enough for the Pittsburgh Pirates, who fell 5-4 to the Toronto Blue Jays at the Rogers Centre on Sunday afternoon.

Entering play, Tellez had gone nearly a month without an RBI and hadn’t driven in a run on a base hit since the end of April.

He was able to put an end to both droughts. The Pirates’ first baseman drove in the first run of the game on a single in the top of the third. Two innings later, he plated a pair with a double to center field.

Both instances gave the Pirates (27-32) a lead, but the Blue Jays (28-30) were able to erase both deficits.

With the Pirates trailing by two runs in the top of the ninth, Tellez drove in Oneil Cruz, who doubled, with a single the other way but Ji Hwan Bae struck out to end the game.

Outside of Tellez, the Pirates were 0 for 13 with runners in scoring position and left 13 runners on base.

Toronto tied the game 1-1 in the bottom of the third when Daulton Varsho scored on a Quinn Priester wild pitch.

Vladimir Guerrero Jr. trimmed the Pirates’ lead to one with an RBI-single in the fifth and the Blue Jays jumped out in front on Daniel Vogelbach’s pinch-hit double against Hunter Stratton. Vogelbach’s two-bagger drove in a pair and the former Pirates’ designated hitter had at least one RBI in all three games in the series.

Davis Schneider tacked on an insurance run with a double down the left field line in the sixth.

Priester (0-5) was charged with four runs on eight hits in 4.2 innings. He didn’t walk a batter and struck out three. Chris Bassitt (6-6) allowed three runs in five innings and struck out seven.

Up Next

The Pirates have a day off on Monday before returning to PNC Park to face the Dodgers. Jared Jones (3-5, 3.55 ERA) will be opposite former Pirate Tyler Glasnow (6-3, 3.04 ERA) in Tuesday’s opening game.

Noteworthy

The Pirates recalled Priester prior to first pitch and placed Alika Williams on the 10-day injured list.

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