Angel Zerpa shook off a tough start to post a solid outing, but Kansas City’s offense couldn’t keep up as Pittsburgh completed the sweep with a 4-1 victory.
The Pirates struck quickly against Zerpa, with Connor Joe being retired on a bullet of a grounder to start the game before Bryan Reynolds went yard to put Pittsburgh on the board. In the second, they got consecutive doubles from Liover Peguero and Vinny Capra, followed by a bouncer up the middle from Jack Suwinski to give the Pirates a 3-0 lead after seven batters.
Meanwhile, Andre Jackson was going to work against the Royals. He struck out the first five consecutive batters he faced, attacking the zone with a four-seam, slider, changeup repertoire. After Freddy Fermin walked to end the stretch, Jackson responded by retiring the next four, two of them via strikeout. Leading off the fourth, Bobby Witt Jr. got the Royals on the board by turning on a low fastball for his 27th dinger of the year.
The game moved right along from that point, as Jackson shook off the dinger immediately and Zerpa settled in nicely. Only seven runners reached base for the rest of the game, and only two of those even managed to get to second. One of those was Suwinski, taking Collin Snider deep in the seventh to give Pittsburgh a 4-1 lead. The other was Maikel Garcia leading off the ninth with a triple. The next three were retired in the order as the Royals lost 4-1.
Though baserunners were pretty abundant in this game, so were double plays. The teams combined for five GIDPs, with the Royals seeing rallies snuffed in the seventh and eighth innings on them.
The loss drops Kansas City to 41-94. They will get the day off tomorrow before welcoming the Boston Red Sox to town for a three game set.
Angel Zerpa: 5.2 IP, 5 H, 3 R, 3 ER, 2 BB, 3 K, 1 HR
Andre Jackson: 5.2 IP, 2 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 7 K, 1 HR
Bobby Witt Jr.: 1-4, HR, R, RBI
Bryan Reynolds: 2-3, HR, BB, R, RBI