It rained for most of the early part of the day, but the ‘window’ arrived in Pittsburgh just in time for tonight’s tilt between the Pirates and Milwaukee Brewers to get started on time without interruption by the weather. The Brew Crew jumped out to an early lead in the first inning on a two-run blast by Mike Moustakas, his 14th of the year, to spot starter Chase Anderson an early 2-0 lead.
Anderson threw a scoreless first, then saw his lead boosted to 3-0 thanks to an RBI triple by Christian Yelich. Chase gave a run back in the bottom of the second on an RBI single by Elias Diaz, but the offense continued to pile on early runs for their starter. Moustakas led off the third with his second homer of the day (and 15th on the season) to make it 4-1, then Yasmani Grandal smashed a dinger of his own for back-to-back jacks and a 5-1 lead.
Colin Moran hit a solo homer for Pittsburgh in the fourth, but Anderson’s day would end after five effective innings, during which he allowed 6 hits and two earned runs. Jeremy Jeffress relieved Chase and tossed two scoreless innings in the sixth and seventh.
The Brewers had Junior Guerra warming up to pitch the eighth inning before the offense fired things back up late. An run-scoring double by Lorenzo Cain and an RBI single by Moose plated two additional runs to stretch Milwaukee’s lead to 7-2, causing Craig Counsell to sit Guerra back down in favor of Corbin Burnes with a five-run cushion.
Baseball’s worst pitcher this season made things interesting, though. A punchout to Josh Bell got the inning started before Bryan Reynolds singled and Colin Moran walked. Elias Diaz moved up both runners with a groundout. But with two down, pinch-hitter Melky Cabrera lined a two-run double and was followed by an RBI single from Cole Tucker. Now 7-5, Burnes was yanked for Josh Hader. The lefty struck out Kevin Newman on a 97 MPH fastball after a seven-pitch at-bat to end the threat.
The Brewers broke the game open in the ninth inning, starting with a leadoff homer by Eric Thames. An Arcia walk and later a one-out double by Ben Gamel put runners at second and third, then Christian Yelich was intentionally walked to load the bases. LoCain’s second double of the contest plated all three runs to make it 11-5.
Hader was able to sit back down with the lead extended and Matt Albers cleaned things up by throwing a scoreless ninth inning to secure the six-run victory, The Milwaukee Nine tallied 18 hits, with every starting position player recording at least one base knock. Cain had three hits while Moose and Grandal both added four-hit performances.
Milwaukee moves up to 32-25 with the win while the Steel City Nine falls to 27-28. The two teams will square off again on Friday at 6:05 PM central, with Jhoulys Chacin set to do battle against Chris Archer.