PITTSBURGH (AP) Yasiel Puig spent Monday afternoon eagerly awaiting the solar eclipse at PNC Park, then provided a moonshot of his own to wrap things up late into the night.
Puig homered in the 12th inning, sending the Los Angeles Dodgers to a 6-5 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates. Curtis Granderson added a grand slam for Los Angeles, which hasn’t lost consecutive games since July 20 and 21 against Atlanta.
Puig drove a 1-0 pitch from rookie Dovydas Neverauskas (1-1) over the wall in center for his 22nd of the season. Following the game, Puig was asked how his home run compared to the eclipse.
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”The eclipse only happens every 100 years,” Puig said, ”but my home runs are also 40 at-bats in between. So, they’re both exciting.”
The Pirates threatened in the bottom half, putting runners on first and second with two out, but Ross Stripling retired Max Moroff on a liner to right for his second save.
Granderson hit a grand slam off Gerrit Cole in Los Angeles’ five-run seventh, and Luis Avilan (2-1) pitched one inning for the win.
The Pirates have lost seven of their past nine games.
Granderson’s second homer in three games since he was acquired in a trade with the Mets lifted the Dodgers to a 5-3 lead. But the Pirates responded with two in the eighth on Josh Harrison’s RBI double and a run-scoring fielder’s choice for pinch-hitter Josh Bell.
Pirates manager Clint Hurdle’s bullpen was limited to three relievers entering the game. He felt leaving Cole in the game gave Pittsburgh the best chance to preserve its lead in the seventh.
”I still know he’s got pitches and he’s our ace,” Hurdle said. ”I still felt he was the best equipped to get out of that situation.”
Tony Watson came in to pitch the eighth for Los Angeles, but was pulled after recording just one out in his return to Pittsburgh. The left-hander, who was traded to the Dodgers on July 31, was charged with one run.
Dodgers left-hander Alex Wood allowed three runs and five hits in six innings. He gave up three home runs for the second time in his 134 major league appearances.
”Alex was grinding out there,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. ”Gave up some homers. A little bit, I don’t recall if it was the fourth or fifth inning, something about that AC joint that flared up out there.”
The Pirates took a 2-0 lead when Jose Osuna and Sean Rodriguez hit back-to-back home runs in the second inning. Harrison made it 3-0 when he connected in the third for his career-high 15th home run.
Cole allowed five runs and eight hits with seven strikeouts in 6 1/3 innings.
”Pretty undesirable,” Cole said. ”Think I have seven or eight (starts) left, so looking to continue just to make good pitches, pound the zone and just get deep into ballgames.”
Dodgers: LHP Clayton Kershaw, who has been on the 10-day disabled list with a strained lower back since July 24, will make a rehab start for Triple-A Oklahoma City on Saturday. He threw 55 pitches during a four-inning simulated game at PNC Park on Monday.
The Dodgers are expected to recall right-hander Brock Stewart from Triple-A Oklahoma City to start in place of Yu Darvish on Tuesday. Darvish, who is on the 10-day disabled list with a back injury, is expected to return against the Milwaukee Brewers on Monday.
Dodgers: Stewart (0-0, 1.64 ERA) last appeared for Los Angeles on Aug. 10, when he allowed two runs in 1 1/3 innings of relief against Arizona.
Pirates: RHP Jameson Taillon (7-5, 4.64 ERA) will look to continue his recent string of solid starts when he faces the Dodgers on Tuesday. He has allowed two runs in two of his past three starts and has surrendered eight total runs across those three appearances.
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