A lob single by Neil Walker with the bases loaded and two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning Monday night lifted the Pittsburgh Pirates to a 6-5 home win over the Cincinnati Reds.
The hit capped a double comeback by the Bucs (9-11), who trailed by scores of 2-0 and 5-4.
New Pirates first baseman Ike Davis gave the Pirates a 4-2 lead with a fourth-inning grand slam, becoming the first player ever to hit grand slam homers for two teams in the same April. Davis also did the trick on April 5 for the New York Mets, also against the Reds. The Mets traded Davis to Pittsburgh on Friday. Davis is 5-for-13 in three games for the Bucs.
But, the Pirates trailed 5-4 before Andrew McCutchen led off the eighth inning with a homer. Jared Hughes (1-0), called up from “AAA” Indianapolis earlier in the day to take the roster spot of the injured Wandy Rodriguez, worked out of a two-on jam in the top of the ninth inning and earned the win. Walker’s walkoff hit came off losing pitcher J.J. Hoover (1-2).
McCutchen and Walker both had three hits. Davis went 2-for-4. Brandon Phillips, Todd Frazier and Devin Mesoraco each recorded three hits and an RBI for the Reds (8-11). Jay Bruce and Billy Hamilton also drove home Cincinnati runs.
In game two of the four-game series scheduled for Tuesday night, the Pirates plan to start Edinson Volquez (1-0) against Johnny Cueto (1-2). Cueto has an 14-4 lifetime record against Pittsburgh.