Pirates Can't Capitalize On Opportunities, Fall To Cubs 2-0

The Pirates loaded the bases in the 1st, 5th and 7th, but couldn't get the big hit to break the game open

Matt Harkins
August 17, 2019 - 5:35 pm

© Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

PITTSBURGH (93.7 The Fan) - It was a Kris Bryant solo home run in the 7th and Ian Happ scoring on an Elias Diaz throwing error to third that gave the Chicago Cubs the 2-0 victory Saturday afternoon at PNC Park to even up the weekend series.

There were plenty of chances for the Pittsburgh Pirates to bring home some runs as they loaded the bases with 1 out in the 1st inning, no outs in the 5th inning and 2 outs in the 7th inning, but couldn't get the big hit to break it open.  The Pirates ended up leaving 11 runners on base in the game overall.

"I don't think it's ever to small of a sample size to dissect what kind of at-bats you had, in the first inning we had two line drive outs. Yeah, you'd like to get a ball to the outfieild and you'd like to hit the ball in the gap and score everybody. We had two guys blister balls in the infield, after that we didn't get the at-bats we needed," said Pirates Manager Clint Hurdle. "The end of the day I think we were 0 for 12 with runners in scoring position, we left 11 men on base and 0 for 6 with the bases loaded, pretty much wraps up the story for today."

Pirates Starting Pitcher Steven Brault pitched well enough to get the victory this afternoon, but it was one pitch to Bryant in the 7th that put the Cubs in front and they were able to hold on late for the victory. There were plenty of positives for Brault to take away from the game this afternoon even though the Pirates did not come out on top.

"You can always say you have confidence, but until you have success doing something there's that little extra bit that you can't really grasp on to," said Brault. "I've always been confident in my abillities, but now having success with it, it's just that little bit further. So now, I'm able to throw it and I know it doesn't have to be pinpoint and I know when I get it pinpoint it's going to work. So, I feel really good about where I'm at."

The final line for Brault tonight was 7 innings pitched and gave up 1 run on 2 hits and struck out a career high 8 batters on 82 pitches (57 strikes).

The Pirates and Cubs will wrap up this 3-game weekend series Sunday night in Williamsport, PA at the Little League Classic as Mitch Keller (1-1, 7.94 ERA) takes the mound for Pittsburgh against Jose Quintana (10-7, 4.11 ERA) and Chicago.

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