Brault homers, pitches into 7th as Pirates sweep Rockies 6-2

Colorado Rockies’ Pat Valaika heads back to the dugout after being called out on strikes while facing Pittsburgh Pirates relief pitcher Felipe Vazquez in the ninth inning of a baseball game Sunday, Sept. 1, 2019, in Denver. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

DENVER | Steven Brault hit his first major league homer and pitched effectively into the seventh inning to lead the Pittsburgh Pirates over the Colorado Rockies 6-2 on Sunday for a four-game sweep.

Adam Frazier homered on the first pitch of the game, the second straight day the Pirates did that. Kevin Newman connected against Tim Melville on Saturday night.

Brault (4-3) allowed only one hit until Nolan Arenado lined a two-out fastball into the seats in left field in the sixth for his 35th home run. Brault left in the seventh when the Rockies got a run on two hits and an error, but Richard Rodriguez got out of the jam by fanning Trevor Story.

Brault socked a solo homer that made it 3-1 in the top of the seventh. He allowed just one earned run and four hits in 6 1/3 innings.

Josh Bell and Colin Moran each hit an RBI single for the Pirates. Bryan Reynolds had three hits.

Pittsburgh could have had more runs but Colorado cut down three baserunners in the first six innings. Reynolds was thrown out at home trying to score from first base on a double in the third, Starling Marte was picked off in the fifth when he broke for second too early, and Erik Gonzalez was thrown out trying to stretch a single in the sixth.

That helped limit the damage for Jeff Hoffman (1-5), who was recalled from the minors before game. Hoffman lasted just two innings in his previous start for the Rockies but held Pittsburgh to two runs and nine hits over five innings Sunday. It wasn’t enough to prevent last-place Colorado from losing its sixth in a row.


Pirates: Activated RHP Clay Holmes from the 10-day injured list.


The Rockies brought up three players from Triple-A Albuquerque. In addition to Hoffman, Colorado added left-handed reliever James Pazos and infielder Pat Valaika, who started at second base and had a single in four at-bats. Pazos struck out the only batter he faced.

The Pirates are expected to add to their roster before playing at home Tuesday.


Pirates: RHP Mitch Keller (1-3, 8.62 ERA) opens a six-game homestand Tuesday against Miami. Keller will be making his eight major league start.

Rockies: RHP Peter Lambert (2-5, 6.63) starts his third game of the season against the Dodgers when Colorado begins a three-game series in Los Angeles on Monday.