Held hitless into 7th by Houser, Pirates top Brewers in 10th
MILWAUKEE (AP) — Brewers starter Adrian Houser was pulled with a no-hitter intact in the seventh inning, and Gregory Polanco and the Pittsburgh Pirates rallied to eventually beat Milwaukee 8-5 in the 10th Tuesday night.
Houser left after 6 1/3 innings and 104 pitches with Milwaukee ahead 4-0.
“We had kind of lowered his pitch count, to 70 last time,” manager Craig Counsell said. “This is as high as he’s been all year, wasn’t going to finish the game.”
Daniel Norris relieved and Polanco greeted him with a single for the Pirates’ first hit, keying a five-run rally.
Polanco snagged a deep drive by Eduardo Escobar at the right field wall to end the ninth, then had an infield single with two outs in the 10th that drove in a run for a 6-5 lead. Bryan Reynolds added a two-run single off Blaine Hardy (0-1).
Polanco also walked twice and stole two bases.
“I knew I didn’t have that much room right there, I saw the wall, I just kept running and I guess I did the perfect timing, perfect jump, and I got it,” Polanco said of his catch.
“That was one of my best games,” he added. “No matter what situation we are in, I love this team because we push, we push and we fight.”
The NL Central-leading Brewers had won eight of their previous 10 games. Milwaukee outscored the last-place Pirates 28-3 in sweeping a three-game series at Pittsburgh last week, and beat them 6-2 on Monday.
David Bednar (3-1) retired all six batters he faced in the ninth and 10th.
The Brewers led 4-1 in the seventh when Reynolds hit a grounder that could’ve been turned into an inning-ending double play. But shortstop Willy Adames bobbled it for an error and a run scored.
Hoy Park’s second career hit, a three-run double, gave Pittsburgh a 5-4 lead. The 25-year-old South Korean was obtained from the Yankees in a trade on July 26.
“He walked to the plate confident, and that’s a cool thing to see with a guy who you’ve just acquired,” manager Derek Shelton said.
Avisail García’s third hit of the game, an RBI double off reliever Chris Stratton, made it 5-all in the seventh. He drove in three runs.
Pirates rookie starter Max Kranick gave up three runs in four innings.
Houser retired the first nine batters before a ball was hit out of the infield.
No runner got past second base until the fifth inning against Houser. Polanco walked and stole second for the second time in the game, and continued to third on catcher Omar Narváez’s throwing error. But Houser retired the next three batters, ending the threat by striking out pinch-hitter Wilmer Difo with a 96 mph fastball. In the sixth, with the Brewers leading 4-0, Houser again worked around a leadoff walk.
Pirates: RHP Nick Mears, who sprained an ankle while pitching Monday, is day to day, manager Derek Shelton said.
Brewers: RHP John Axford, who entered Monday’s game to a standing ovation in the ninth inning in his first major league appearance since 2018, was placed on the 10-day IL (right elbow). He retired just one of the five batters he faced before leaving with the injury. “It was a lot to take in in one day for anybody,” Counsell said. LHP Angel Perdomo was recalled from Triple-A Nashville and RHP Sal Romano was claimed off waivers from the Yankees.
INF Keston Hiura, who is on the team’s 40-man roster but not on its active roster, was placed on the IL (COVID-19). He had been optioned to Nashville on July 30. OF Christian Yelich and pitchers Josh Hader, Jake Cousins, Jandel Gustave and Hunter Strickland already had been placed on the COVID-19 list over the last few days.
The three-game series concludes with Pirates LHP Steven Brault making his 2021 debut versus Brewers RHP Freddy Peralta (8-3, 2.17 ERA). Brault worked rehab assignments in July after going on the 60-day IL (left arm strain) on April 1. Peralta, who had the NL’s lowest ERA entering Tuesday, pitched 10 shutout innings with 10 strikeouts over his last two starts.
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