Pirates 6, Brewers 5
Andrew McCutchen and Garrett Jones helped James McDonald win
when he didn’t have his best stuff.
McDonald may have helped himself even more.
In a tight spot in the sixth inning, he kept a cool head,
striking out Rickie Weeks and Cody Ransom before departing. The
Pirates hung on to win 6-5.
”It was a big moment for my team in the sixth and I was able to
bump my chest and slow myself down and get out of that inning
because I wasn’t very sharp today,” McDonald said.
McDonald gave up a run for the first time after 13 scoreless
innings, ending the longest scoreless run by a Pirates pitcher this
He finished with eight strikeouts won for the third time in four
starts. McDonald (5-2) held the Brewers to four hits and a walk,
and only one of the three runs he allowed was earned.
”He didn’t have his best stuff today but he did have, and he
has for much of the season, an extremely good downhill angle on his
fastball.” Hurdle ”It was good for him to finish.”
Joel Hanrahan pitched a shaky ninth for his 14th save of the
season. Brooks Conrad led off with a solo home run, and
pinch-hitter George Kottaras walked before Norichika Aoki hit into
a game-ending double play.
Clint Barmes hit a solo shot off John Axford in the ninth that
extended the Pirates’ lead to 6-4
.”The last at-bat, to square up a high velocity fastball, he’s
got to feel better,” Hurdle said of Barmes, who entered the game
Martin Maldonado, called up earlier this week to replace injured
catcher Jonathan Lucroy, hit a solo shot in the seventh for his
first major league home run, and got Milwaukee within one.
”It’s tough to lose but I really do like the way we played,”
Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said. ”I thought it was a good
ballgame. They just did a little bit better job.”
The Pirates took two out of three in the series for their first
winning series in Milwaukee since April 2010.
”It’s good to get a series win but to make it anything more
than that, I’m not going to be jumping around, dancing in the
streets,” Hurdle said. ”We expect to win series when we go on the
road, just like we do at home. We know the history and it is nice
to do it, I get that.”
The Brewers are 59-21 against the Pirates since 2007.
McDonald led off the fifth inning with a single, and scored on
McCutchen’s homer. Jones later made it 4-2 Pirates by homering for
the second day in a row.
Rod Barajas added a solo homer in the top of the sixth.
Brewers starter Michael Fiers (1-1) gave up four runs and eight
hits with eight strikeouts and a walk in five innings in his second
big league start.
Nyjer Morgan homered for the second time in three days for
Milwaukee, taking McDonald deep in the sixth, after ending a streak
of 138 plate appearances without a homer – or RBI – to start the
season on Friday night.
With two outs in the first, Taylor Green hit an RBI double and
Rickie Weeks singled in a run against McDonald, who struck out Cody
Ransom to end the inning.
He retired 14 straight batters before Morgan hit a solo home run
with one out in the sixth inning to cut the Pirates lead to
Morgan’s solo homer in the first inning Friday night snapped his
major league record of 138 consecutive plate appearances without an
RBI to start a season.
Brewers slugger Ryan Braun was held out of the lineup for a
second consecutive day after aggravating a right Achilles tendon
injury and hurting his right hip sliding into second base on Friday
Braun pinch-hit for Ransom with runners on first and second in
the eighth but flied out deep to right to end the inning. The
Brewers were without third baseman Aramis Ramirez, who left
Saturday night’s game with a strained left quadriceps. Green got
the start at third Sunday.
”I think everybody fought hard but I don’t think you play for
moral victories at this level,” Braun said. ”Whoever is in there
we need to find a way to compete and try to win games. Certainly we
played well today, just not quite well enough to get the
Barmes hit an RBI single in the second to get Pittsburgh on the
The Brewers scored two unearned runs off of McDonald in the
first when Morgan reached on an error, stole second, and scored on
Taylor Green’s double. Rickie Weeks followed with a run-scoring
NOTES: The Brewers have used a new starting lineup in each of
the last 17 games. . Casey McGehee, a member of the Brewers playoff
team last year, got a start at third base for the Pirates on
Sunday. . Pirates rookie first baseman Matt Hague’s hitting streak
ended at eight games after going 0 for 4. He had hit safely in
every game in which he had played since being promoted from
Triple-A Indianapolis on May 25. . Brewers pitcher Randy Wolf
entered the game as a pinch runner in the ninth.