Losses continue to pile up
Pirates fall 8 games under .500 mark
PITTSBURGH — The Philadelphia Phillies won another one-run game to extend their winning streak to six games.
Nick Williams, Scott Kingery and Jorge Alfaro drove in runs on consecutive at-bats in the seventh inning to help Philadelphia win 3-2 on Saturday.
With two outs in the seventh, Williams sent a line drive down the right field line that took a funny hop off the fence and eluded Pirates right fielder Gregory Polanco, who bobbled the ball. The relay throw still made it to third baseman Colin Moran ahead of Williams, but he able to avoid the tag for a triple.
Carlos Santana scored on the play. Kingery followed up with a single up the middle and then scored when Alfaro hit a double to right-center to give the Phillies all they’d need to clinch their third straight series win and improve to an MLB-best 19-7 in one-run games.
“Another win in a one-run game,” manager Gabe Kapler said. “I think that’s something to really be proud of and something we continue to focus on.”
Jake Arrieta (6-6) worked around six hits with the help of eight strikeouts to hold the Pirates to two runs over seven innings. It was Arrieta’s first win in eight starts, though it didn’t look that way at first.
“There’s no perfect formula for how the game’s going to play out,” Arrieta said. “Yeah, you want to score first. You want to score often. Sometimes that doesn’t happen.”
Pirates starter Jameson Taillon (5-7) was charged with all three runs. He struck out eight and walked none in his 77 pitches over 6ª innings. He had allowed just two singles and hadn’t allowed a runner to even get into scoring position coming into the seventh inning. Reliever Edgar Santana allowed the go-ahead run to score with Alfaro’s double. The three runs were scored on three straight pitches.
“I was really excited and looking forward to being the guy to put an end to our tough streak here,” Taillon said. “I’m at 68 pitches without a guy touching second base and someone’s warming up? That’s tough. So, I don’t know. I haven’t been pitching the greatest. I understand the trust isn’t there. “
Starling Marte singled and scored in the first and homered in the second as part of a three-hit afternoon to stake the Pirates to an early lead. Pittsburgh has lost five straight.
Victor Arano worked around a leadoff double in the ninth for his second save.
The Pirates activated right-handed reliever Michael Feliz from the 10-day disabled list, selected the contract of right-handed pitcher Alex McRae from Triple-A Indianapolis and optioned relievers Dovydas Neverauskas and Josh Smoker to Indianapolis.
Feliz had been on the disabled list since June 24 with a right shoulder strain. He has a 5.51 ERA in 33 appearances this season. It’s McRae’s first MLB call-up. He had a 4.61 ERA in 17 appearances — 16 starts — with Indianapolis. He’ll work out of the bullpen in Pittsburgh.
Phillies: INF Cesar Hernandez did not start after fouling a ball off his foot on Friday. He flew out in the eighth as a pinch hitter.
Pirates: C Francisco Cervelli (concussion) returned from his rehab assignment and took batting practice before the game. He hopes to be activated from the disabled list today … RHP Joe Musgrove (finger infection) threw a bullpen session. He expects to return from the disabled list on Tuesday … RHP Chad Kuhl (right forearm strain) is getting a second opinion on his injury and expects to be out until after the All-Star Game.
Phillies: Drew Anderson is expected to be recalled from Triple-A Lehigh Valley to make his 2018 debut. Anderson was 5-3 with a 4.15 ERA. It will be his third career MLB appearance.
Pirates: Nick Kingham (2-4, 4.70 ERA) will try to shake off a career-worst appearance last time out against Los Angeles on July 2, when he gave up seven runs in three innings. The rookie is 0-4 over his last five starts.