Recap: Pittsburgh vs. Cincinnati

Pittsburgh, PA (SportsNetwork.com) - Francisco Cervelli hit a three-run home run to help the Pittsburgh Pirates to a 7-6 win over the Cincinnati Reds to open a three-game series.

 

Andrew McCutchen hit a two-run homer for the Pirates, who were swept in three games in Washington over the weekend.

 

Jeff Locke lasted just four innings in the start as he gave up nine hits and four runs -- two earned -- while walking two. Rob Scahill (2-3) got the first two outs of the fifth to pick up the win.

 

Jay Bruce finished with a solo home run and three RBI for the Reds, who had won four of five coming into the contest.

 

Josh Smith made his MLB debut and allowed four runs on three hits with six walks over three-plus inning. Pedro Villarreal (0-2) allowed three unearned runs in one inning of work to get tagged with the loss.

 

The Reds took the lead in the first inning as the first three batters singled to load the bags and Bruce brought home the first run with a base hit to right. Two batter later, Eugenio Suarez hit a grounder to shortstop that should have been an inning-ending double play, but Jordy Mercer's throw to first went wide and two runs came home for a 3-0 lead.

 

Bruce's run-scoring groundout in the fourth gave the Reds a 4-0 lead, but the Pirates went ahead in the home half.

 

The first two batters reached base and Pedro Alvarez doubled home one before Cervelli hit his third home run of the season to tie the game. Villarreal then took the mound and got the next two batters out before Gregory Polanco kept the inning alive with a triple and scored as Starling Marte reached base on a bad throw from Suarez.

 

McCutchen then hit his ninth homer of the season to cap the scoring in the frame and make it a 7-4 game.

 

Billy Hamilton drove in a run with a sacrifice fly in the fifth, and Bruce's solo home run to leadoff the sixth made it a one-run game.

 

The Reds stranded a man at third in the seventh, and Tony Watson struck out the side in the eighth.

 

Mark Melancon tossed a 1-2-3 ninth for his 24th save of the season.

 

Cincinnati first baseman Joey Votto went 2-for-4 and has now reached base safely in 30 straight games, the longest active streak in the majors ... The Reds stranded 12 men on base as the team went 4-for-17 with runners in scoring position ... The Reds still lead the season series, 5-2.

 

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