The Pittsburgh Pirates hosted the Brewers in their Home Opener last night, losing to Milaukee in extra innings. The Pirates were coming off a dominant win in St. Louis where they won 5-1.
The home opener was almost rained out in the 2nd inning. The teams had to wait almost two hours for the game to resume.
The Pirates had trouble holding their 5-1 lead in the 9th inning. Milwaukee’s hitters were too much for the underpowered Pirates’ bullpen. The game went into extra innings where the Brewers won in the 11th.
Gregory Polanco made his season debut after being activated yesterday. Polanco, who tested positive for Covid-19 earlier this month, was placed on the 10-day IL last week. Polanco went 0-2 with a walk in his first game back.
When the game finally resumed, Colin Moran continued his early success by going yard in the 2nd inning. This is Moran’s second homer in two days. Moran’s first bomb of the season started the scoring for Pittsburgh in St. Louis on Sunday.
Before the rain delay, Steven Brault started for the Pirates. Brault pitched well, throwing two complete innings with one strikeout.
After the delay, Chad Kuhl came out of the bullpen to replace Brault. This was Kuhl’s first big league appearance since June 26th, 2018. Kuhl threw a gem, going 3.2 innings, with four strikeouts, keeping the 1-0 Bucs lead. Chris Stratton would come in for Kuhl with two outs in the sixth.
In the 7th, Nik Turley entered the game ending Stratton’s night. Stratton only faced one hitter and was able to get him out. Unfortunately, Turley was unable to hold the lead. The Brewers’ Lorenzo Cain blasted a two-out RBI-single to left, tying the game 1-1.
Luckily for the Bucs they were able to hold the Brew Crew at bay, getting a bases loaded out in the 7th. This was the first bullpen mistake for manager Derek Shelton that almost cost Pittsburgh the game in regulation play.
Moran hit another homer, this time into the river, breaking the tie. Moran now has three home runs in two days, and his first career multi-home run game.
Last night’s game was winnable for the Bucs. However, costly bullpen mistakes by Shelton late in the game hurt the Pirates. Pittsburgh’s bullpen ended up blowing a four-run lead in the ninth, and the Pirates’ bats didn’t show up when it mattered.
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