In seven innings, the Pirates offense managed two walks, three singles and a double off Wandy Rodriguez as he continued his streak of effective pitching.
Rodriguez walked two in the first, but the Pirates were unable to make him pay. Brad Lincoln was rough early. Michael Bourn led off with a singled, stole second, moved to third on a fly ball and scored on a grounder from Lance Berkman. Then Carlos Lee homered. Bourn was a catalyst again two innings later. He singled with one out and scored on a Jeff Keppinger double. Berkman belted a two run homer and the ‘Stros were up 5-0.
The Pirates finally got to Rodriguez in the fourth. Andrew McCutchen, Pedro Alvarez, Ryan Doumit and Lastings Milledge singled to bring in one run and load the bases with just one out. But Rodriguez got Bobby Crosby to pop out and then whiffed Lincoln. Inning over. The Pirates would get just two more hits the rest of the game – a run scoring single from Garrett Jones.
Rodriguez struck out 10 in seven innings. He allowed one run. Lincoln gave up seven hits and five runs in five innings. He struck out zero.
Pirates committed no errors.
The bullpen (D.J. Carrasco, Javier Lopez and Brendan Donnelley) combined to give up one run in three innings (reaching).
Offensive woes continue to plague the team.
Rodriguez is 6-4 against the Pirates, tying them for the most wins he has against any team with Cincy and Milwaukee.
This was the 9th time in his career that Berkman drove in three or more runs against the Pirates. As hard as he hits the Pirates, he actually tortures the Reds and Cards even more.