Umpire Jason Visconti makes the safe call after Pittsburgh Pirates' Wilmer Difo, left, scored past Cincinnati Reds catcher Tucker Barnhart, top, on a groundout by Colin Moran during the ninth inning of a baseball game in Pittsburgh, Wednesday, Sept. 15, 2021. The Pirates won 5-4. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Wilmer Difo scored on a groundout from Colin Moran with one out in the ninth inning, and the Pittsburgh Pirates handed the Cincinnati Reds a seventh loss in nine games with a 5-4 win Wednesday night.

Difo skied a ball down the left-field line against Mychal Givens (3-3) that seemed primed for an out before Max Schrock overran it, allowing it to drop in play for a one-out double. Moran grounded to first, where Joey Votto couldn't field it cleanly before moving the ball onto Givens covering. Difo beat the throw home.

Cincinnati entered the day half a game back of the St. Louis Cardinals for the second wild card in the National League. It was a half-game up on St. Louis and the San Diego Padres before losing 6-5 to Pittsburgh on Tuesday.

Chris Stratton (6-1) pitched a perfect ninth for the Pirates, striking out the first two batters before getting Jonathan India to ground out.

Kyle Farmer drove the first pitch he saw from Pirates reliever Sam Howard 381 feet into the left-field bleachers, tying it at 4 in the eighth with his 14th homer. Tucker Barnhart scored on a sacrifice fly the previous inning to cut into a 4-2 deficit.

After falling behind by two in the first, Pittsburgh took the lead with three runs in the third.

Yoshi Tsutsugo drove in Ke’Bryan Hayes on a double to left and advanced to third on a bobble from Schrock. Bryan Reynolds tripled down the right-field line, scoring Tsutsugo, and went home on Moran's sacrifice fly that put Pittsburgh up 3-2.

Reds starter Vladimir Gutiérrez (9-7) was pulled after getting Hayes to groundout for the second out of the fourth. Tsutsugo then had an RBI single off Justin Wilson, making it 4-2.

Gutiérrez allowed four runs on five hits in 3 2/3 innings.

Mitch Keller gave up two runs and four hits in five innings for the Pirates.


Pirates players and coaches wore Roberto Clemente’s No. 21, honoring the Hall of Fame right fielder on the day he’s celebrated around Major League Baseball. The number was also mowed into the grass in right field at PNC Park. Clemente’s son, Luis, threw out the first pitch.

Players of Puerto Rican descent and Roberto Clemente Award nominees from other major league teams were also permitted to wear Clemente’s number.


Reds: OF Shogo Akiyama got his first start since Aug. 24 in place of Tyler Naquin, who is still hurting from his collision in the outfield with shortstop Jose Barrero in Saturday’s game. Akiyama, who is hitting .199, got a few starts when OF Nick Senzel (knee) was injured but hasn’t had a hit since Aug. 15. He’s struck out seven times in 16 at-bats since.


RHP Tyler Mahle (11-5, 3.73) will take the mound for the Reds to conclude the three-game series against an unannounced Pirates starter on Thursday. Mahle, coming off allowing two runs and four hits in six innings his last time out Sept. 10, has surrendered fewer than three runs in three of his past four starts.


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