WP: Jordan Lyles (3-4); LP: Clay Holmes (1-3) ; Save - none ; Homeruns: Pit - none; Mil - Christian Yelich (22); Mike Moustakas (23)
What? They WON? Well, here’s a Box Score for your perusal!
The Milwaukee Brewers (72-58) came off the mat and rallied for three runs in the bottom of the fifteenth after the Pittsburgh Pirates had scored twice in the top of the inning, finishing with an improbable 7-6 win. Those of us that chose (or had to) stay up had given up the ghost on this one more than once, but another walk-off base hit by Orlando Arcia capped a comeback largely fueled by Bucs’ reliever Clay Holmes inability to throw strikes.
Finally, a win over the Pirates. Milwaukee is now 3-8 against Pittsburgh this season.
The Pirates pushed two across in the top of the fifteenth against the Crew’s ninth pitcher, Jordan Lyles. A one-out double, an intentional walk, and a two out bloop double from Francisco Cervelli that plated two with the aid of an error by second baseman Jonathan Schoop. That put the Pirates up 6-4.
In the bottom half, Christian Yelich was out on a ground ball, but then Holmes walked Jesus Aguilar and Hernan Perez, with several of his pitches missing badly (ball four to Zeus made it all the way to the backstop on the fly). That brought up Ryan Braun with a chance to be the hero...and he struck out on three pitches. With no bench players or relief pitchers left Lyles took his spot in the batter’s box and Holmes fell behind 3-0 before finally delivering a strike. But the next pitch was ball four, and that gave Erik Kratz a shot. With the count 2-2 he singled up the middle on a grounder just out of the reach of shortstop Kevin Newman, driving in Aguilar and Perez to tie the game.
Lyles held second, and Arcia grounded one into right. Lyles scored when the throw was well off the plate; 7-6 Brewers and celebrating ensued.
For the second time this week the Brewers posted a four run first inning, and for the second time it wasn’t enough to post a win against an NL Central foe. The Pirates (63-66) kept chipping away and scored (relatively) late runs off of Josh Hader and Jeremy Jeffress (in the ninth) to tie things at four.
The Pirates had base runners all night long, and ended up stranding twelve runners on the evening. Starting pitcher Wade Miley alone was responsible for ten of the stranded runners in his five innings of work. Wade gave up two in the top of the second inning after the Crew had grabbed their four run lead, and they stranded two, one, two, two, and three in his five innings.
Milwaukee jumped on Bucs’ starter Joe Musgrove quickly in the bottom of the first. Lorenzo Cain hit the first pitch into deep right center for a ground rule double, and Christian Yelich the second pitch deep to right center for a two run homer. Jesus Aguilar singled to left center and two outs later Mike Moustakas pulled a two-two pitch into the seats in right for the 4-0 lead.
Pittsburgh scored off of Hader in the sixth; Gregory Polanco’s sac fly plated Adam Frazier, a left handed bat that doubled off of the wall in center off of Josh, his third hit of the game. Hader had a perfect seventh inning with two strikeouts.
The ninth inning run off of Jeffress came after a two out walk put runners at first and second, and Starling Marte singled on a 3-2 pitch to tie it up.
Corbin Burnes worked three of the extra innings in relief, allowing one hit, no runs, no walks, and three k’s.
The win lets the Brewers keep pace with the Cards and Cubs, and pick up a game on the Rockies in their chase for the play-offs. Tomorrow night...er, tonight’s game will have Brewer ace Jhoulys Chacin (13-4, 3.58) facing the Buccos’ Jameson Taillon (9-9, 3.58)
- The Pirates had 17 hits and left 19 on base.
- Kratz finished 3 for 7 with three k’s
- Cain, Braun, and Arcia had two hits a piece.
- Once again, Craig Counsell elected to go to Dan Jennings to replace Taylor Williams with two down and a lefty coming up. The lefty was Polanco, who has hit lefties well. and Jennings walked him on four pitches. Against lefties on the night Polanco was 3-4 with a sac fly and a walk.
- Steven Brault threw four scoreless, hitless innings in relief and made the last out in the top of the fifteenth, but Clint Hurdle went with Holmes in the final frame.
- Game time was 5 hours, 36 minutes.