WASHINGTON(AP) When the
rallied to tie the
in the ninth, all it did was allow them to continue the type of losing streak experienced by few others in major league history.
Pittsburgh, almost predictably, countered with
's two-out, two-run double in the 10th. The Pirates won 8-5 on Tuesday night for their season-high fourth straight victory,
while the Nationals became only the fourth team ever to construct a six-game losing streak in which they scored at least five
runs every time.
''We continue to put runs on the board,'' Washington manager Manny Acta said. ''This is the 10th game in a row where we score
five or more runs - and we're 1-9. That tells you the story right now.''
The unusual six-game skid matches those by the 1929 Pirates, 2004
, according to STATS, LLC. The Nationals are averaging 5.7 runs in those six games, but they've allowed 8.8.
Here's a more startling statistic: With Joe Biemel (0-3) taking the loss, the Nationals bullpen now has a record of 1-14.
No wonder Acta and his hitters rue the fact that they had the winning run on second base with one out in the ninth and failed
to get him home.
''We've got to come up with big hits, myself included, especially the way things are going for us,'' said
, who struck out for the final out of the ninth. ''We had a chance to win the game right there, and now I've got to think
about that for tonight and until I get another opportunity to do it again.''
Actually, this was a battle of the bullpens the Nationals could have won. The Pirates gave closer
the night off, so
was given the first save opportunity of his major league career. He blew it by allowing the run in the ninth, so
(1-0) - making only his fifth relief appearance in 156 games in the majors and minors - pitched 1 1-3 innings to get the victory.
''It was definitely surprising,'' said Gorzelanny, recalled from Triple-A Indianapolis on Sunday. ''It was good. I'm glad
we got a win and I got out there.''
allowed four runs over six innings, and
homered for the Pirates, who blew a 5-0 lead. The Nationals rallied with
's homer in the fourth and three runs in the sixth.
tied the game when he scored on Burnett's wild pitch after hitting a triple with one out in the ninth.
But the Pirates, averaging 9.5 runs in their last four games, had some more offense in the tank.
''We came in with hopes to take this series, definitely,''
said. ''On the other hand, I know they're thinking the same thing, 'Oh, the Pirates are coming in, this will be a good time
to get on track.' It showed tonight neither team is going to lay down, but this is a good opportunity for us to get something
Notes: Nationals 3B
reached safely for the 37th consecutive game, keeping his streak alive with a bunt single in the sixth. ... Nationals CF
(hamstring) was placed on the 15-day disabled list after the game. ...
(5 innings, 3 runs) did enough in his first major league start Monday night that the Nationals will start him again Saturday
against Baltimore. ... Washington leadoff hitter
, who had 122 plate appearances before drawing his first walk Monday night, got another one Tuesday.