PITTSBURGH (AP) — Rookie Ji Hwan Bae’s first career triple highlighted a seventh-inning rally as the Pittsburgh Pirates slipped past the Milwaukee Brewers 5-4 on Wednesday.
Jason Delay reached with one out in the seventh on a line drive off the right foot of Milwaukee reliever Elvis Peguero (4-5). The speedy Bae then laced a ball to the gap in right-center to put Pittsburgh in front. Bae scored on Miguel Andujar’s pinch-hit single as the Pirates won for the seventh time in nine games.
Ke’Bryan Hayes hit his 13th home run for Pittsburgh. Jack Suwinski and Josh Palacios tied the game with back-to-back RBIs in the sixth. Carmen Mlodzinski (3-3) earned the win and David Bednar worked around a leadoff single by Andruw Monasterio in the ninth while earning his 33rd save.
The Pirates won hours after losing veteran designated hitter Andrew McCutchen for the rest of the season with a partially torn left Achilles.
Pittsburgh signed McCutchen to a one-year deal last winter, reuniting him with the club he helped return to relevance in the early 2010s. The 36-year-old franchise icon has served as a mentor of sorts to a young group trying to do the same after consecutive 100-loss seasons.
The Pirates are making progress, with youngsters like Bae and Hayes helping lead the way. Pittsburgh is 24-21 over its last 45 games with a lineup littered with members of a young core that could have some staying power.
Willy Adames hit a three-run homer off opener Colin Selby in the first, but the NL Central-leading Brewers lost for the fifth time in eight games since a nine-game winning streak gave them a little breathing room over the second-place Chicago Cubs.
Milwaukee starter Freddy Peralta’s bid to win his sixth straight start ended in the sixth. Bryan Reynolds singled with one out, Hayes walked and Suwinski doubled to center to pull Pittsburgh within one. Trevor Megill replaced Peralta and immediately surrendered an RBI single to Palacios.
Peralta gave up three runs and four hits with a walk and four strikeouts.
Adames and Mark Cahna had two hits each for the Brewers, who had the tying run on base in each of the final two innings. Pinch-hitter Rowdy Tellez grounded into a double play to end the eighth and Bednar struck out William Contreras with a 97-mph fastball to close it out.
Pirates: SS Oneil Cruz (fractured left ankle) has re-started a running program. The club remains optimistic that Cruz, who has been out since early April, can go on a rehab assignment before the end of the season. … RF Henry Davis (wrist soreness) is hitting off a pitching machine without issue but there remains no timetable for a return.
Brewers: Have an off day Thursday before continuing a six-game road trip on Friday in the Bronx against the New York Yankees. Colin Rea (5-5, 5.07 ERA) starts for Milwaukee in the opener.
Pirates: Off on Thursday before beginning a three-game series at NL East-leading Atlanta on Friday.