Sun, 24 Sep 2023

Pirates make first-inning runs hold up in sweep of Cardinals

Field Level Media
05 Jun 2023, 04:19 GMT+10

Ji Hwan Bae's two-run single in the first inning Sunday held up as the difference for the Pittsburgh Pirates, who topped the visiting St. Louis Cardinals 2-1 for a three-game series sweep.

The Pirates have won five in a row overall.

Pittsburgh starter Rich Hill (5-5), who had lost two straight starts, gave up one run and four hits in 6 2/3 innings, with six strikeouts and three walks. It was the longest start of the season for Hill, 43.

Although it seemed that Pirates closer David Bednar would not be available after pitching in each of the first two games of the series, he pitched the ninth to earn his 13th save, including one in each game of the series.

Andrew Knizner hit a solo homer in the seventh inning for the Cardinals, who have lost five of their past six games.

St. Louis starter Miles Mikolas (4-2), who had won four decisions in a row and had a 16-inning scoreless streak entering the game, allowed two runs and 10 hits, with two strikeouts and no walks.

In the bottom of the first, Bryan Reynolds singled to right and went to second on Jack Suwinski's single to right-center. Carlos Santana popped out. Ke'Bryan Hayes reached on an infield single that went off the glove of first baseman Paul Goldschmidt, loading the bases.

Bae singled to center, driving in Reynolds and Suwinski for a 2-0 Pirates lead and ending Mikolas' scoreless streak at 16 2/3 innings.

The St. Louis leadoff batter reached in each of the first four innings, but Hill got out of it each time.

With one out in the second and a runner on first, Cardinals designated hitter Luken Baker, making his major-league debut after being brought up from Triple-A Memphis, singled to right in his first at-bat. He finished 2-for-4.

Going into the seventh, Hill had retired nine in a row. He got the first two Cardinals out to make it 11 straight before Knizner hit his fifth homer, to left, to cut the deficit in half to 2-1.

--Field Level Media

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