Chad Kuhl was just happy his team got the win. His manager was thrilled that his right-hander got the credit for it.
Kuhl pitched six solid innings to win for the first time since May 6 Authentic Stefon Diggs Jersey , a span of seven starts, and the Pittsburgh Pirates edged the Cincinnati Reds and Matt Harvey 3-2 on Friday night.
The Pirates’ last back-to-back wins came on May 16-17 against San Diego, which pushed them a season-high nine games over .500 at 26-17. They have gone 8-18 since and lost eight straight series.
”It was good for the team to open up the series with a win and hopefully we can win this series (Saturday),” Kuhl said.
Kuhl (5-4) gave up two runs, one earned, and six hits while striking out six and walking three. He allowed no more than three runs in any of his previous four outings.
”People who say wins are not important for pitchers are people who don’t pitch,” Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. ”There is value to it. Everybody likes a pat on the back. Everybody likes a reward. I don’t think that’s ever going to change in sport. If it does, then it will be time for me to get out.”
The Pirates pulled ahead 3-2 in the sixth on consecutive sacrifice flies by Starling Marte and Colin Moran off reliever Michael Lorenzen. The runs were charged to Harvey (1-5), who was lifted after giving up back-to-back singles to pinch-hitter Elias Diaz and Josh Harrison to start the inning.
Harvey allowed three runs on four hits with two strikeouts and two walks. The former New York Mets ace is 1-3 with a 5.09 ERA in seven starts since being traded to Cincinnati on May 8 after being designated for assignment.
Wandy Peralta relieved Harvey and hit Corey Dickerson, the only batter he faced, with a pitch. That left the bases loaded with none out for Lorenzen.
”I’m just frustrated about the whole outing,” Harvey said. ”It was kind of a struggle the whole time. To have the lead going into the sixth inning and letting two guys get home is unacceptable and something I’m (upset) about.”
Felipe Vazquez held on in the ninth for his 13th save in 17 opportunities. Tucker Barnhart singled with two outs and pinch-runner Billy Hamilton stole second base before Joey Votto struck out swinging.
A sacrifice fly by Scooter Gennett in the third inning drew the Reds into a 1-1 tie and they went ahead in the fourth, scoring a run on a throwing error by Kuhl.
”I couldn’t believe it. I was in shock when I threw the ball away,” Kuhl of the first error of his three-year career. ”I kind of went behind the mound and reset.”
Pittsburgh scored the game’s first run when Gregory Polanco grounded into a double play in the second inning.
The Reds lost despite outhitting the Pirates 7-5. They were 0 for 11 with runners in scoring position and stranded 10 baserunners.
Cincinnati’s Jose Peraza had two hits.
KANG OFF RESTRICTED LIST
Pirates infielder Jung Ho Kang has been reinstated from the restricted list and optioned to Triple-A Indianapolis after missing last season and the first part of this year because of visa issues.
The 31-year-old Kang was unable to secure a work visa to travel from his native South Korea to the United States after he was arrested for DUI for a third time in December 2016 in Seoul. He received an eight-month suspended prison sentence.
The move is procedural, so Kang can begin drawing the prorated portion of his $3 million salary. He has already played in 11 minor league games. He was cleared to travel to the U.S. on April 27.
PIRATES SIGN TOP PICK
The Pirates signed South Alabama outfielder Travis Swaggerty Stefon Diggs Jersey Big , the 10th overall pick in last week’s amateur draft, to a contract with a $4.4 million bonus and assigned him to short season Class A West Virginia. He hit .296 with 13 home runs and a .455 on-base percentage in 57 games this year.
Reds: RHP Homer Bailey (right knee inflammation) stopped his rehab assignment at Triple-A Louisville. On the disabled list since May 30, Bailey made one start for Louisville and was tagged for five runs in three innings Monday.
Pirates: RHP Richard Rodriguez (right shoulder inflammation) is scheduled to pitch a simulated game Saturday.
Reds: Luis Castillo (4-7, 5.79 ERA) has lost his last three starts with a 7.47 ERA.
Pirates: RHP Ivan Nova (3-5, 4.68) beat the Cubs at Chicago last Sunday in his return from the DL, allowing one run in 5 2/3 innings after being out with a sprained right ring finger. He is 3-7 lifetime against Cincinnati.
JACKSONVILLE (11-6) at PITTSBURGH (13-3)
Sunday, 1 p.m. ET, CBS
OPENING LINE – Steelers by 6
RECORD VS. SPREAD – Jaguars 9-8, Steelers 7-9
SERIES RECORD – Jaguars lead 13-11
LAST MEETING – Jaguars beat Steelers 30-9, Oct. 8, 2017
LAST WEEK – Jaguars beat Bills 10-3; Steelers had bye
AP PRO32 RANKING – Jaguars No. 10, Steelers No. 2
JAGUARS OFFENSE – OVERALL (6), RUSH (1), PASS (17)
JAGUARS DEFENSE – OVERALL (2), RUSH (21) Authentic Kirk Cousins Jersey , PASS (1)
STEELERS OFFENSE – OVERALL (3), RUSH (20), PASS (3)
STEELERS DEFENSE – OVERALL (5), RUSH (10), PASS (5)
STREAKS, STATS AND NOTES – Second postseason meeting between teams. Jacksonville stunned Pittsburgh 31-29 at Heinz Field in wild-card round of 2007 playoffs. … Steelers seeking second straight AFC title game appearance. Jaguars have reached AFC title game twice (1996, 1999). … Jaguars are 6-6 all-time in postseason. Steelers are 35-25. … Jacksonville dominated regular-season visit to Pittsburgh, picking off five Ben Roethlisberger passes, including pair of second-half pickp6s that turned 9-7 deficit into 20-9 lead. Five interceptions were franchise-record for single game. … Jaguars rookie RB Leonard Fournette ran for season-high 181 yards and two scores vs. Steelers in October. … Jaguars shut down Buffalo in 10-3 victory last week, limiting Bills to 263 yards. … Jacksonville QB Blake Bortles one of only three QBs in NFL history to run for more yards (88) than he passed (87) for in playoff victory, joining Michael Vick (2005) and Otto Graham (1950). … Jaguars have only won multiple playoff games in same postseason once (1996). … Forecast is temperature expected to be in teens. Jaguars are 1-8 all-time when temperature is 32 degrees or lower at kickoff. … Jacksonville dropped last three road games of regular season. … Steelers are 9-1 all-time after getting first-round bye. Only loss came in 1993 divisional round against Buffalo. … Pittsburgh led NFL with franchise-record 56 sacks. Jaguars finished second with 55. … Steelers are 8-4 in playoff games at Heinz Field, winning five of last six. … Pittsburgh playing in 61st playoff game, tied with Dallas for most in NFL history. … Steelers are 16-9 in divisional round, including 12-2 mark at home. … Steelers WR Antonio Brown expects to play. All-Pro missed final two games with left calf injury. … Brown only player in NFL history with five straight seasons with 100-plus receptions. … Pittsburgh RB Le’Veon Bell averaged 109 yards rushing in three playoff games last season. … Roethlisberger is 13-7 in the playoffs. Win would tie him with Hall of Famer Terry Bradshaw for most by QB in playoffs in team history. … Roethlisberger tied with Dan Marino for fifth-most playoff completions in NFL history (385). … Pittsburgh K Chris Boswell has made all 15 field goals in playoffs. … Steelers DE Cam Heyward’s 12 sacks most by Pittsburgh defensive lineman since Keith Willis had 12 in 1986.