Pirates survive Archer’s rough debut
Adam Frazier’s RBI single in the eighth inning helped the Pittsburgh Pirates win in Chris Archer’s debut, beating the St. Louis Cardinals 7-6 on Friday night.
Pittsburgh overcame a rough outing by Archer, acquired from Tampa Bay earlier in the week, as gave up five runs and seven hits in 4 1/3 innings. He struck out six and walked four. Despite the uneven performance, the right-hander — winless in his last eight starts — received a standing ovation when he was removed during a three-run fifth inning.
The Pirates broke a 6-6 tie in the eighth when Josh Harrison singled with one out off Jordan Hicks (3-3) and Jordy Mercer walked. After pinch-hitter Jose Osuna struck out, Frazier drove in Harrison by grounding a single into center field.
Kyle Crick (2-1) gave up Jedd Gyorko’s tying RBI grounder in the top of the eighth.
Felipe Vazquez pitched a scoreless ninth for his 25th save, the most in a season by a Pirates’ left-hander. Mike Gonzalez had 24 in 2006.
Pittsburgh improved to a major league-best 17-5 since July 8.
Archer ran into trouble early as Matt Carpenter hit a home run to center field, his 27th, on the game’s third pitch. Carpenter extended his franchise record for homers leading off a game to 23, including eight this season.
Frazier and Starling Marte had three hits for Pittsburgh, which had a total of 12, and Gregory Polanco drove in three runs. Polanco hit a two-run triple and scored on Colin Moran’s sacrifice fly in the first inning then hit a sacrifice fly during a three-run third that pushed the lead to 6-2.
Harrison and David Freese added two hits each for the Pirates.
Rookies Tyler O’Neill and Yairo Munoz each had three hits of St. Louis’ 15 hits and Carpenter, Gyorko and Dexter Fowler added two each. The Cardinals left 16 runners on base while losing for the third time in four games.
St. Louis starter John Gant gave up six runs in four innings.
The Cardinals pulled to 6-5 in the fifth when Gyorko and Fowler hit RBI singles and pinch-hitter Jose Martinez drove in a run with a grounder.
Pittsburgh’s Francisco Cervelli and Harrison hit consecutive run-scoring singles to cap the third.
Munoz had an RBI double in the second.
Cardinals: RF Fowler (left foot contusion) left the game in the eighth inning. ... LF Marcell Ozuna (left big toe discomfort) returned to the lineup after leaving Thursday’s win over Colorado. ... 2B Kolten Wong (left knee inflammation) is expected to be activated from the disabled list Saturday. ... RHP Adam Wainwright (right elbow inflammation) will join the team Monday in Miami and throw a bullpen session. If that goes well, he will start a rehab assignment with Class A West Palm. ... LHP Brett Cecil (right foot inflammation) is scheduled to begin a rehab assignment with Triple-A Memphis on Monday. ... RHP Luke Gregerson (right shoulder impingement) will be examined by Dr. James Andrews sometime next week in Gulf Breeze, Florida.