Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Pirates 4, Rockies 2 Win Is Head Start Going into 2nd Half Pinch- Hitters Snider, Harrison Provide Some Late-Game Offense after Blunders in Field, on Bases

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Pirates 4, Rockies 2 Win Is Head Start Going into 2nd Half Pinch- Hitters Snider, Harrison Provide Some Late-Game Offense after Blunders in Field, on Bases

Article excerpt

The Pirates bats made up for their defense Friday night.

Taking advantage of the Colorado Rockies bullpen, the Pirates scored two runs in the eighth inning to secure a 4-2 win at PNC Park in their first game after the All-Star break.

The Pirates committed three errors, missed two other outs on defense and ran through a stop sign on the bases. Neither of the Rockies' two runs was earned, and the defense forced Francisco Liriano and Pirates relievers to work harder than they needed to. Two pinch-hitters, Travis Snider and Josh Harrison, provided the go- ahead runs.

Right-hander Matt Belisle entered in the eighth with the scored tied at 2-2. He had allowed runs in each of his previous two outings. Neil Walker promptly roped a single.

Walker ran on a pitch to Gaby Sanchez, and even after pausing to make sure Sanchez's line-drive single to center wasn't caught, Walker reached third. Snider drove Walker home with a double to right field that bounced past a diving Carlos Gonzalez.

Harrison, who entered the game in the seventh, extended the lead to 4-2 with a sacrifice fly to center, scoring pinch-runner Michael Martinez.

After several blunders and poor offensive production through the first six innings, the Pirates tied the score in the seventh. Jordy Mercer singled off left-hander Rex Brothers with one out and took second on a wild pitch. Nolan Arenado threw high on pinch-hitter Harrison's grounder to third, putting runners on first and second. Gregory Polanco singled to load the bases, and Rockies manager Walt Weiss brought in right-hander Adam Ottavino to face Starling Marte.

Ottavino had Marte 0-2 before hitting him in the head with a 93 mph fastball, knocking Marte's helmet off and knocking him to the ground. Assistant athletic trainer Ben Potenziano examined Marte as he stayed down for a few minutes, but he eventually took his base. The hit-batsman forced home a run and tied the score at 2-2.

Andrew McCutchen struck out and Russell Martin flied out to strand the bases loaded.

Liriano allowed one unearned run in five innings, holding the Rockies to three hits. He walked three, two of them in a 27-pitch first inning, and struck out eight. …

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