Corey Dickerson hits 2 HRs, Pirates stay hot in win
CINCINNATI — Corey Dickerson hit two first-pitch home runs, rookie Nick Kingham overcame another Cincinnati rain delay to pitch six shutout innings and drive in two runs, and the Pirates beat the Reds, 6-2, on Saturday for their season-high eighth straight win.
Dickerson homered on the first pitches he saw from Anthony DeSclafani (4-3) in the third and fifth innings for his seventh career multihomer game, helping the Pirates to their longest winning streak since an eight-game stretch Sept. 19-26, 2015.
Josh Bell added four hits, including a run-scoring double in the fourth, to help send the Reds to their third straight loss, their longest slump since a four-game losing streak June 2-6.
The game was delayed 47 minutes by rain in the middle of the fourth inning, one night after the start was held up 2 hours, 55 minutes.
Kingham allowed just one runner past second base before Curt Casali knocked him out of the game with a two-run homer that just barely reached the left field seats in the seventh.
Kingham (5-4) earned his third win in his last three starts, limiting the Reds to four hits and two runs with three strikeouts and two walks in 6 1 ⁄ 3 innings. He also grounded a two-run single up the middle through a drawn-in infield in the sixth.
Ervin Santana finished the seventh and Kyle Crick pitched a perfect eighth against Reds All-Stars Scooter Gennett, Joey Votto and Eugenio Suarez. All-Star Felipe Vazquez escaped a one-out, two-on jam in the ninth.
Dickerson bounced a sharp one-hopper off DeSclafani’s left ankle leading off the game. DeSclafani was able to last 4 1 ⁄ 3 innings, giving up six hits and three runs with two walks and six strikeouts.
Francisco Cervelli was eligible to be activated from the seven-day concussion disabled list Saturday, but manager Clint Hurdle said Cervelli had not resumed baseball activities.
Right-hander Ivan Nova (5-6) is 3-1 with a 3.51 ERA in seven starts since being reinstated from the disabled list June 10. He’d been out with a sprained right ring finger but will start Sunday.
The Reds will start Matt Harvey (5-5), who is 4-0 over his last five starts. He hasn’t allowed more than two earned runs in any of those appearances.