Pirates drop second straight in Milwaukee
MILWAUKEE — It wasn’t pretty, but Zach Davies did something Saturday no other starting pitcher in Milwaukee Brewers history had done before.
And he did it at the expense of the Pittsburgh Pirates.
Despite a shaky outing, Davies became the first Milwaukee starter to open a season with seven straight wins, hanging on for five innings before the Brewers’ bullpen finished off a 5-3 victory over the Pirates.
“I just read that,” Davies said of the milestone. “I think after the season, it’ll be a fun time to kind of reflect back on it. This year, coming up a game short of the World Series last year, that’s the goal for us. Our focus is forward on that.”
Davies (7-0) gave up seven hits, including a home run to Colin Moran, and left with a 4-3 lead. Four relievers blanked the Pirates on one hit, with Josh Hader striking out the side in the ninth for his 15th save.
“He’s performed each and every time out,” Brewers manager Craig Counsell said. “He’s given us those two starts after extra-inning games that we desperately needed and then deep in the games. A day like today when he is a little off to start the game, battled through it and still keeps you in the game and puts up enough zeroes that the offense takes care of him. He’s pitching really well, and it’s important.”
Pirates starter Jordan Lyles lasted only three innings, giving up three runs on five hits and four walks.
Milwaukee moved to a season-high nine games over .500 and beat the Pirates for the fifth time in six games this year.
Ryan Braun had an RBI single in the fourth that put the Brewers ahead to stay. Mike Moustakas hit his 19th home run, and pinch-hitter Manny Pina added a late homer.
Lorenzo Cain walked and scored on Braun’s tiebreaking single off Pirates reliever Michael Feliz (2-2). Pina added an insurance run in the eighth with his homer off Francisco Liriano.
Braun and Moustakas had two hits each.
Moran hit his ninth homer of the year and has homered in three of his last four games. Pirates rookie Bryan Reynolds extended his hitting streak to a major league-high 16 games with a single in the third.
NL MVP Christian Yelich doubled, and now has now hit safely in all seven games this month, batting .560 with five runs, six extra-base hits and seven RBIs.
Pirates first baseman Josh Bell, meanwhile, brought home a run with a bases-loaded sacrifice fly in the third. Bell has 57 RBIs this season, the most in baseball.
Note: Pirates right-hander Trevor Williams (right side strain) threw a four-out simulated game. Manager Clint Hurdle said it was Williams’ first simulated action since being placed on the injured list May 17. Williams said he felt no residual pain. Hurdle said Williams threw 64 pitches, including a breaking ball, changeup, four-seam fastball and two-seam fastball.