VegasInsider.com
Be Social
Home
NFL
NBA
NHL
MLB
NCAA FB
NCAA BK
Auto
Golf
Horses
Soccer
BOX/MMA
WNBA
More
Betting Tools

 
Bucs upset Nats, hold off 9th-inning rally

WASHINGTON (AP) Faced with the based loaded, two outs and one of baseball's hottest hitters at the plate in the bottom of the ninth inning, there was nowhere Felipe Vazquez wanted to be more than on the mound at Nationals Park.

Advertisement

The Pittsburgh Pirates relief ace then coaxed a flyball from Anthony Rendon to cap a two-inning outing Sunday and preserve a 4-3 victory over the Washington Nationals.

''I like that excitement,'' Vazquez said. ''He's a good hitter right now and he's been hitting the ball everywhere. For me, that's a challenge. I take every hitter like him as a challenge.''

Rookie Jason Martin's ground-rule double in the ninth inning off Wander Suero (1-1) scored Josh Bell to provide the go-ahead run for the Pirates.

''I was trying to locate it a little differently,'' Suero said of the curveball Martin hit. ''I was trying to get it on the dirt for him to chase it. Unfortunately, I hung it just a little bit and he made contact.''

That set up Vazquez (1-0), who pitched a scoreless eighth, to finish out the victory. He loaded the bases on a single, a walk and Adam Eaton's bunt single with one out, but struck out Howie Kendrick.

That brought up Rendon, who is hitting .400 with six homers in 55 at-bats. On the sixth pitch, Rendon lofted a fly to center to end the game and secure Pittsburgh's first series victory at Nationals Park since 2013.

''I made my own jam, so I had to get out and I worked my way through,'' Vazquez said.

Vazquez, who pitched parts of two seasons for Washington before he was dealt to Pittsburgh in 2016, blossomed into an All-Star last year. He has yet to allow a run in 8 2/3 innings this season.

''The guy is incredibly talented,'' Pittsburgh manager Clint Hurdle said. ''When you see him at 100 on his 42nd pitch, and basically you saw the velocity trend up throughout the outing.''

''Just the focus, that competitive spirit, and you're going against a guy with a 10-game streak of extra base hits and he got a hit earlier and the bases are loaded. It's all good stuff, and he loves those situations,'' he said.

Washington starter Max Scherzer allowed three runs and seven hits while working a season-high eight innings. He struck out seven. He gave way to Suero, who walked Bell to lead off the ninth and moved to second on Colin Moran's grounder.

With two outs, Martin hit a ground-rule double to left for his second major league RBI.

''He got some big outs and then he just couldn't finish that last pitch,'' Washington manager Dave Martinez said.

The inning compounded Washington's early-season relief woes. The Nationals entered the day with the worst bullpen ERA in the majors and it rose to 7.75.

Pittsburgh starter Jameson Taillon gave up three runs and seven hits in six innings.

Rendon extended his hitting streak to a career-high 13 games with a single in the sixth.

TRAINER'S ROOM

Pirates: OF Gregory Polanco (left shoulder) had two hits and drove in two runs Saturday in his first rehabilitation appearance at Triple-A Indianapolis. ... RHP Dovydas Neverauskas (oblique strain) had two strikeouts in a scoreless inning Saturday for Indianapolis. He's thrown three scoreless innings during three rehab appearances at Indianapolis and Class A Bradenton.

Nationals: Martinez said 1B Matt Adams, who twisted his ankle Saturday while stepping on Pittsburgh RHP Chris Archer's foot, was available to play Sunday.

ARCHER DROPS APPEAL

Archer dropped his appeal and began serving a five-game suspension for setting off a benches-clearing altercation on April 7. Archer threw a fastball behind Cincinnati's Derek Dietrich, who had stood and watched a long home run in his previous at-bat. Archer, who pitched seven innings Saturday against Washington, will make his next start April 21 at home against San Francisco.

UP NEXT

Pirates: Pittsburgh has Monday off. It begins a two-game series at Detroit on Tuesday as RHP Joe Musgrove (1-0, 0.00 ERA) starts against the Tigers for the first time.

Nationals: After an off day Monday, RHP Stephen Strasburg (1-0, 5.40) starts Tuesday as Washington begins a three-game series at home against San Francisco.

---

More AP MLB: https://apnews.com/MLB and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

Copyright 2019 by STATS LLC.
Any commercial use or distribution without the express
written consent of STATS LLC is strictly prohibited.

  
HEADLINES
· Lawrence: June Pitchers Report
· Padres edge Rockies in another slugfest
· Seager, Mariners rally in 8th to beat A's
· Yelich stays hot as Brewers top Giants
· Blue Jays crush Astros as heavy 'dogs
· Adams lifts Nats in rout of D-backs
· Donaldson, Braves overwhelm Phillies
· Cardinals hold off Mets for series win
· Rays hold off Angels, 'over' cashes
MORE HEADLINES
 
Why Buy Picks From VegasInsider.com
MLB Pro Baseball Handicapper Sports Picks Records
MLB Hot Streaks
4-0 G-Plays, 13-2 L15, 26-8 Picks
5-2 Saturday, 26-14 +1,107 Run
47-15 +3,293 G-Plays, +3,535 TY
4-1 +319 L3 Days, 25-8 L33 GPlays
3-0 Saturday, 6-1 +613 L7 G-Plays
26-15 +1,530 Run, +3,223 TY
13-4 +878 Pick Run, 12-4 G-Plays
9-3 L12 Totals, 8-4 L12 Picks
11-5 L4 Days, 14-3 L17 Totals
15-7 L22 Picks, +2,811 TY
9-5 +370 Sat., +2,327 TY
8-2 G-Plays, 19-9 +917 Win Streak
11-4 L15, 14-5 L19, 19-7 MLB Run
35-18 L53 G-Plays, +2,347 TY
4-2 +526 L6 Picks, 9-4 +791 Run
+2,160 MLB Picks TY
5-2 L7 Picks, 10-5 Totals TY
4-1 L5, 9-4 L13, +1,364 TY
3-0 Saturday, 9-4 +482 G-Plays
MLB Baseball Expert Sports Picks
2019 MLB SEASON PICK RECORDS
Money Leaders
Handicapper Money
Kevin Rogers + 3535
Bruce Marshall + 3223
Gary Bart + 2811
Last 7 Day Leaders
Handicapper Money
Bruce Marshall + 1166
Antony Dinero + 998
Ben Burns + 843
Over-Under Leaders
Handicapper Money
Antony Dinero + 2012
NeiltheGreek + 1650
Ben Burns + 1610
Guaranteed Leaders
Handicapper Money
Kevin Rogers + 3186
Scott Rickenbach + 2197
Ben Burns + 1124
Underdog Leaders
Handicapper Money
Bruce Marshall + 1456
Gary Bart + 1245
Jimmy Adams + 1210
Member Leaders
Handicapper Money
Alex Smart + 1455
Gary Bart + 1254
Micah Roberts + 1160
MORE PICK RECORDS
  
corner graphic
With a VI Gold Membership, you can SAVE 20% off Daily Pick packages, SAVE 10% off a Live Odds Pro subscription, and receive access to up to 1,000 Member Plays each month!
VI Gold Membership