The Pirates hit three home runs, enjoyed their biggest inning in nearly two months and ended a four-game losing streak with a 9-5 victory over the Milwaukee Brewers on Monday night at PNC Park.
The Pirates, who had lost their past four games by a combined score of 38-4, used a five-run third inning to catapult themselves to a much-needed victory.
Monday night’s third-inning outburst, which turned a 1-all tie in a 6-1 Pirates lead, was the biggest since a six-run inning during a 10-6 victory over the Cleveland Indians on June 24.
Andy LaRoche, Garrett Jones and Ronny Cedeno homered as the Pirates topped the Brewers for the third time in the past four meetings after losing 17 in a row to their NL Central foe. The Pirates had gone nearly six games without a home run.
Delwyn Young went 3 for 5, and Jones, LaRoche, Lastings Milledge, Cedeno and pitcher Kevin Hart all had multi-hit games as part of the Pirates’ 16-hit attack. Seven different Pirates drove in runs.
Defensively, the Pirates turned three double plays – all in the first four innings – to help Kevin Hart (4-2) earn his first victory in three starts since being acquired from the Cubs on July 20. Hart allowed four runs on nine hits over six innings. He also went 2-for-2 at the plate with one RBI.
In front of 12,478 fans, the Pirates snapped an eight-game losing streak at PNC Park and erased some of the bitter taste of a skid that included an historic 17-2 loss at Wrigley Field.
Brewers starter Carlos Villanueva (2-10), who saved two games against the Pirates earlier this year, allowed six runs on 11 hits in four innings.
Prince Fielder and Mike Cameron homered for the Brewers.