WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Pirates made the unusual move on Friday of challenging back-to-back neighborhood plays at second base on Wednesday in the first inning of the game.

They got the first one overturned, but the second call stood, leaving manager Clint Hurdle without a challenge for the rest of the game.

He stood by the decision, feeling that the Pirates needed to push aggressively when they got an opportunity against Nationals pitcher Stephen Strasburg.

“You’ve got to push the envelope sometimes,” Hurdle said. “It’s very rarely you put the barrel to them and knock them out of the game. You’ve got to look for things you can make happen. We got one call.”

The Pirates missed out on the opportunity to challenge two other questionable calls later in the game. Hurdle feels that on the whole, the MLB replay systems works pretty well.

“I think everybody’s doing everything they can do make it the best product it can be as far as compliance with the rules,” he said.

AROUND THE HORN

Matt Gajtka wrote this morning about the Pirates upcoming series with the Milwaukee Brewers and how they’ve stacked up against the NL Central this season.

Gajtka: Set Sights on Central Concerns Amidst Ups And Downs

My feature is on the streaky nature of this season’s club and the place that needs improvement for them to avoid big losing stretches.

Streaky Pirates Searching For Stopper

PIRATES LINEUP

NATIONALS LINEUP

CONDITIONS

It’s looking gorgeous again, with a high forecast at 91 degrees by weather.com. The wind has shifted from Wednesday, blowing from right to left at 12 MPH.

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