It took 16 innings and a combined total of 11 pitchers on both sides, but the Arizona Diamondbacks beat the Pittsburgh Pirates on Sunday afternoon to win the series and claw one game closer to the Los Angeles Dodgers of first place in the National League West after they (finally) lost a game.
The Bucs struck first, driving doubles in both the first and third innings which scored a run each. Besides those two slip-ups, however, Wade Miley was dominate, working eight strong innings, allowing seven hits on just two runs while striking out seven.
Heading into the top of the sixth down 2-0, Arizona rallied to tie the game. After singles by both Adam Eaton and Martin Prado to open the frame, Paul Goldschmidt walked to load the bases. That brought Aaron Hill to the plate, who ripped a single to left field which scored Eaton. Gerardo Parra came up next, and while he hit into a double play, Prado was able to come home and even up the score.
For the next nine innings, the bats of both teams fell silent. The Snakes’ bullpen took over for Miley in the ninth and allowed just two hits the rest of the way. The D-Backs finally broke through in the sixteenth. With two outs, Eaton blooped a double to center field off Kris Johnson, who was making his ML debut, bringing home A.J. Pollock and Didi Gregorius to take a 4-2 lead.
Brad Ziegler (7-1) picked up the victory after pitching two perfect innings, while Johnson (0-1) suffered the loss.
Arizona (64-58) is now 7 1/2 games behind the Dodgers (72-51) first place in the NL West, and still trail the Cincinnati Reds (70-54) by 5 games for the second NL wild-card spot. They begin a significant four game series with the Reds tomorrow, in Cincinnati.