MLB Baseball

6
Final 1 2 3   4 5 6   7 8 9   R H E
Pittsburgh1 0 0 0 1 0 2 0 2 6141
Colorado0 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 0 253
2
  W: S. Brault (4-3)   L: J. Hoffman (1-5)
12:10 PM PT1:10 PM MT2:10 PM CT3:10 PM ET15:10 ET19:10 GMT3:10 12:10 PM MST2:10 PM EST2:40 PM VEN23:10 UAE2:10 PM CT, September 1, 2019
Coors Field, Denver, Colorado  Attendance: 32,685

Pirates go for sweep of equally disappointing Rockies

The Pittsburgh Pirates aren't having the season they anticipated, but they are heading into September playing good baseball with a chance to end 2019 strong.

The Pirates have won seven of their last nine and have a chance to sweep a series when they face the Rockies in Denver on Sunday. Pittsburgh will send left-hander Steven Brault to the mound while Colorado is expected to start right-hander Jeff Hoffman.

Hoffman is expected to be a part of the September call-ups on Sunday.

Brault (3-3, 4.06 ERA) will make his third appearance and second career start against the Rockies. He is 0-1 with a 9.00 ERA in those first two appearances. His only start against them came April 16, 2018, in Pittsburgh. He allowed five runs on five hits in six innings in a 6-2 loss.

Brault finished 0-2 in five starts in August but posted a 3.86 ERA. He took back-to-back hard-luck losses to the Chicago Cubs and Washington, tossing 13 innings in the two starts while only allowing three runs.

He went five innings at Philadelphia on Tuesday but got a no-decision in the Pirates' 5-4 win.

"Steve's last start was his most inconsistent start since he got on a roll," Pittsburgh manager Clint Hurdle said. "During the last start, he didn't have fastball command or didn't have command of his secondary pitches."

The Pirates bolstered their bullpen on Saturday when they claimed reliever Wei-Chung Wang off waivers from Oakland. He is expected to join the team in Pittsburgh on Tuesday.

Hoffman (1-4, 7.81) will make his 10th start of the season and second of his career against Pittsburgh. The righty, acquired from Toronto in the Troy Tulowitzki trade in 2015, has struggled in spot starts this season and has shuttled between Triple-A Albuquerque and the majors.

He has pitched six innings in just one start this season, and his only win came when he allowed three runs in five innings in a 5-4 victory over Arizona on May 29.

In his last outing for the Rockies, on Aug. 13, Hoffman gave up four homers and seven runs in just two innings against the Diamondbacks.

He took the loss in his only outing against Pittsburgh, July 21, 2017, in Denver when he allowed seven runs on nine hits in three innings.

The Rockies are also looking for something positive going into the final month of a disappointing season, and it might be the play of rookie outfielder Sam Hilliard, who made his major league debut against Boston on Tuesday. He homered that night and added another against Pittsburgh on Thursday.

He also made a diving catch in Friday's loss that saved a run and tripled and scored a run Saturday night.

"You're going to see some rangy plays from him because he can run," Colorado manager Bud Black said. "He's shown what he can do even though it's a few games here. He got the base hit, scored Desi, the great diving catch. He's moving well. The at-bats have been fine. He'll continue to get at-bats but it's good to see him playing the way he's playing.

--Field Level Media

Updated September 1, 2019

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