It took a long time for Pittsburgh Pirates fans to see their team win their ninth in a row Sunday afternoon. After a two hour and 20 minute rain delay and extra innings, the Pirates beat the Milwaukee Brewers 2-1 on Russell Martin’s RBI single in the 14th inning.
The Pirates bats didn’t wake up until the late in the game as Kyle Lohse and Tyler Thornburg limited the Pirates to two hits over the first seven innings.
But in the eighth the Pirates not only doubled their hit total but also tied the game 1-1. Starling Marte singled and Neil Walker would move him over to second, then Marte scored on a two-out liner to left field by Andrew McCutchen.
The Brewers only run was unearned and came in the second inning off Charlie Morton. Morton would only go two innings as the rain began to fall in the bottom of the second.
The Pirates bullpen did a tremendous job shutting down the Brewers over the next 12 innings. Vin Mazzaro threw a remarkable five hitless frames after the rain delay, followed by an inning each from Justin Wilson, Bryan Morris, Jason Grilli and Mark Melancon. Tony Watson took home the win by keeping Milwaukee off the board in the 12th, 13th and 14th innings.
The Pirates had the bases loaded in the ninth and 13th innings but were unable to score. The 14th inning was a different story. Gaby Sanchez would single and then steal second base. After a walk to Jordy Mercer, pinch-hitter Russell Martin stepped up to the plate and ended the game with a single to center field off reliever Francisco Rodriguez.
After playing 14 innings, it is a good thing that the Pirates have an off day on Monday, their third in seven days. It will give them an opportunity to get some rest before they face the Philadelphia Phillies on Tuesday in the opener of a three-game series at PNC Park.