Polanco’s two-run homer lifts Pirates over Reds, 5-2
Polanco broke a 1-1 tie when he drove a ball into the shrubbery in center field off Homer Bailey (0-2). Polanco also had a tying sacrifice fly in the third inning, giving him three RBIs as the Pirates won for the fifth time in six games.
Steven Brault (2-0) pitched one-run ball over five innings in his first start this season. The left-hander allowed three hits, struck out four and walked four. He took over the rotation spot left by Joe Musgrove, who has a right shoulder strain.
Brault also got the win in the opener last Friday when he worked three scoreless innings in relief at Detroit.
Bailey allowed five runs — four earned — and seven hits in 4 2/3 innings with three walks and two strikeouts. He is 3-10 with a 4.75 ERA in 22 starts in March and April during his 12-year career.
Josh Harrison started the Pirates’ fifth by drawing a leadoff walk, and Polanco followed with his second home run. Corey Dickerson hit an RBI triple with one out and scored when shortstop Jose Peraza fumbled Francisco Cervelli‘s two-out grounder for an error.
Cincinnati, which has lost four of five, scored the game’s first run in the second. Scooter Gennett came home on the second of Brault’s two wild pitches in the inning.
Dickerson also doubled, and he and Harrison each had two of Pittsburgh’s nine hits.
Reds: RF Scott Shebler (bruised right elbow) was not in the lineup after being hit by a pitch in Cincinnati’s previous game Monday but is expected to play Friday. … LHP Brandon Finnegan (strained left biceps) is scheduled to make a rehab start Monday for Triple-A Louisville then be activated from the disabled list if all goes well. … RHP Kevin Shackelford (strained forearm) is close to throwing a bullpen session.
Pirates: SS Jordy Mercer (jammed right pinkie finger) returned after sitting out Wednesday’s loss to Minnesota and went 1 for 2 with a double and two walks.
Reds RHP Luis Castillo (0-1, 10.80 ERA) will face RHP Trevor Williams (1-0, 0.00) on Friday night in the second game of the four-game series. Castillo allowed six runs in five innings in a loss to Washington last Saturday in his first start of the season. Williams pitched six hitless innings last Sunday to win at Detroit.
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