The Pittsburgh Pirates played two games on Saturday afternoon, taking on the Philadelphia Phillies at home and the Boston Red Sox on the road.

The Pirates won 5-3 at home, with Jordan Lyles getting the start. In five innings, he allowed three runs on seven hits, with no walks and five strikeouts. He gave up all three runs in the second inning. Lyles will make one more start at Pirate City before joining the Pirates for the regular season. They plan to get him six innings and 100 pitches.

After Lyles left, the Pirates got a bullpen performance that they hope to see often during the season. From the sixth inning on, they got shutout innings from Richard Rodriguez, Kyle Crick, Keone Kela and Felipe Vazquez.

The offense was led by a two-run homer from Corey Dickerson and a long solo homer from Oneil Cruz. It was the third home run of the spring from Dickerson and the second for Cruz. Dickerson also added his fourth double. Francisco Cervelli hit his first double, driving in the first run of the game. The Pirates got their other tally in the sixth on a Lonnie Chisenhall single.

Here’s the Cruz homer

Things did not go well in Fort Myers, though there was one major highlight. Ke’Bryan Hayes took one out to straight away center field, driving in three runs.

That homer made it 4-3 at the time, but Boston scored the final eight runs, handing the Pirates a 12-3 loss.

Jameson Taillon got his last start before his Opening Day assignment in Cincinnati on Thursday. He had a tough time on Saturday against a lineup filled with Red Sox starters. Taillon allowed four runs on eight hits, with no walks and three strikeouts. Tyler Lyons followed with a shutout inning. The Red Sox scored their final eight runs off three minor league pitchers, though it was all minor league hitters in the lineup at the time. Beau Sulser and Mike Wallace combined to allow six runs in the eighth inning.

The offense was quiet outside of the Hayes homer. They had nine hits total, but the other eight were all singles. Bryan Reynolds picked up two of those hits.

Sunday’s Action

The Pirates play their final game of the Grapefruit League schedule on Sunday afternoon at 1:05 PM. They are in Sarasota taking on the Baltimore Orioles. Jacob Stallings returns to the lineup after being removed from a game earlier in the week due to a neck injury.

Here’s today’s lineup:

  1. Adam Frazier 2B
  2. Jung Ho Kang 3B
  3. Corey Dickerson DH
  4. Josh Bell 1B
  5. Melky Cabrera RF
  6. Pablo Reyes CF
  7. Jose Osuna LF
  8. Erik Gonzalez SS
  9. Jacob Stallings C

Trevor Williams will be on the mound for his final start of the spring. He will be followed by Nick Kingham and Steven Brault.

The bench includes Ke’Bryan Hayes, Bryan Reynolds, Will Craig, Christian Kelley, Patrick Kivlehan, Alfredo Reyes and Adrian Valerio.

As for some notes from today’s talk with Clint Hurdle…

Monday’s Action

The Pirates travel to Houston to take on the Astros for two games. Monday’s game will be at 8:10 PM. Felipe Vazquez, Keone Kela, Kyle Crick, Richard Rodriguez and Nick Burdi are all scheduled to pitch. Joe Musgrove will be at Pirate City pitching in his final tuneup before his regular season debut.

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