The Pittsburgh Pirates salvaged the final game of a three-game series in Cincinnati on Sunday, defeating the Reds 3-2.
Starter Jeff Locke (9-2; 2.11 ERA) pitched one-hit ball for six innings, allowing only one run, striking out six batters and walking four.
Garrett Jones homered for the second straight game for Pittsburgh (57-39), and Jordy Mercer and Jose Tabata both drove home runs with RBI singles. Michael McKenry recorded two of the Pirates’ seven hits.
Six Pirates pitchers combined on a three-hitter. Jason Grilli, who worked the ninth inning, earned his 30th save of the season.
For the Reds (55-43), Zach Cozart scored on a wild pitch, and Joey Votto forced home a run with a double play ball. Cincinnati starter Homer Bailey (5-9; 3.84 ERA), who is 0-3 since he threw a no-hitter on July 2, delivered 122 pitches in 6-and-a-third innings. Bailey allowed three runs and seven hits with 12 strikeouts and one walk.
In the middle game of the three-game series on Saturday, the Reds scored five times in the first inning off Pittsburgh starter A.J. Burnett (4-7; 3.07 ERA) and held on for a 5-4 victory. Only two of the runs against Burnett were earned runs. He would work five-and-two-thirds innings, throw 109 pitches, surrender ten hits, strike out eight batters and walk two.
In the big first inning for Cincinnati, the first run scored on an error and another on a sacrifice fly. Brandon Phillips singled home a run, and Punxsutawney’s Devin Mesoraco drove home two with a double. For Pittsburgh, Jones and Andrew McCutchen homered, Clint Barmes scored on a Reds error, and Travis Snider provided a pinch-hit RBI double. McCutchen went 4-for-5, and Mercer tallied two hits.
Cincinnati starter Mat Latos (9-3; 3.53 ERA) recorded the win, and Aroldis Chapman earned his 23rd save.
On Monday night, the Pirates will begin a four-game series against the Nationals (48-50) in Washington with Charlie Morton (1-2; 3.19 ERA) starting for Pittsburgh against the Nats’ Dan Haren (4-10; 5.61 ERA).