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Pirates shake off shaky Glasnow, erupt vs. Phillies

MLB.com

PITTSBURGH -- With two hit batsmen, three walks and five stolen bases allowed in three-plus innings, it's safe to say Pirates rookie Tyler Glasnow struggled in his home debut. The Bucs' offense compensated, erupting for a five-run fifth inning and holding on to beat the Phillies, 7-4, on Saturday.

Down, 3-2, in the fifth inning, a single by Jordy Mercer and back-to-back Aaron Nola walks to pinch-hitter Matt Joyce and John Jaso loaded the bases. Gregory Polanco delivered a go-ahead two-run single, David Freese followed with a two-run single of his own, and a sacrifice fly by catcher Francisco Cervelli made it 7-3.

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PITTSBURGH -- With two hit batsmen, three walks and five stolen bases allowed in three-plus innings, it's safe to say Pirates rookie Tyler Glasnow struggled in his home debut. The Bucs' offense compensated, erupting for a five-run fifth inning and holding on to beat the Phillies, 7-4, on Saturday.

Down, 3-2, in the fifth inning, a single by Jordy Mercer and back-to-back Aaron Nola walks to pinch-hitter Matt Joyce and John Jaso loaded the bases. Gregory Polanco delivered a go-ahead two-run single, David Freese followed with a two-run single of his own, and a sacrifice fly by catcher Francisco Cervelli made it 7-3.

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"We saw really good at-bats, guys working to get on base," Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said of the fifth inning. "Just good quality at-bats."

The Pirates improved to 7-1 against the Phillies at PNC Park since 2014.

Glasnow's erratic start ends with injury

Glasnow was pulled in the fourth inning due to what the Pirates called right shoulder discomfort, but the bullpen limited the Phillies to two runs in the final six innings. Pittsburgh placed the rookie on the 15-day disabled list on Sunday.

Video: PHI@PIT: Glasnow exits with right shoulder discomfort

Nola surrendered six earned runs on six hits in four-plus innings before being pulled in favor of the recently recalled Severino Gonzalez. Nola has only pitched six innings deep into a game once in his last seven starts.

"He didn't have command of his pitches," Phillies manager Pete Mackanin said. "He threw too many balls, he got behind. He's usually a strike one guy to get ahead of hitters. Started off pretty good, but just lost his command."

MOMENTS THAT MATTERED
Patience pays off: The Pirates took their first lead largely as the result of seeing pitches and displaying discipline during their big fifth inning. Joyce, Jaso and Polanco combined to swing at just three of 14 pitches until Polanco's sharply hit single to right chased Nola and turned a deficit into a lead Pittsburgh would not relinquish.

Video: PHI@PIT: Polanco rakes a two-run single in the 5th

Scary stuff: In the third inning, Glasnow hit catcher Cameron Rupp in the head with a 91-mph fastball, and Rupp immediately crumpled to the ground as his helmet fell off. Rupp was able to walk off the field and was replaced by Carlos Ruiz. Rupp showed no ill effects or damage from the hit that grazed his cheek, according to Mackanin, though he will be re-evaluated Sunday.

Video: PHI@PIT: Rupp leaves game after being hit in the head

Glasnow later hit Nola in the left hand with a fastball and was pulled soon after in the fourth. Nola said his knuckles had taken most of the hit, but there was no damage done. More >

Video: PHI@PIT: Nola takes pitch off his hand, stays in

Nicasio puts out the fire: When Glasnow left the game, Juan Nicasio walked into a situation in which there were two on, none out and a 2-1 count against Peter Bourjos at the top of the Phillies' order. But Nicasio ensured the game remained tied when he came back to strike out Bourjos, induce Odubel Herrera into weakly grounding out and strike out Andres Blanco.

Video: PHI@PIT: Nicasio escapes jam by striking out Blanco

"Big shot in the arm," Hurdle said. "You don't know which way that inning goes if you don't shut it down."

If you must steal, steal bases: Through Glasnow's three-plus innings, Herrera, Cesar Hernandez and Freddy Galvis combined to steal five bases. Mackanin attributed it to the 6-foot-8 Glasnow being slow to the plate, and Glasnow admitted after the game it's something he needs to work on.

Video: PHI@PIT: Phillies steal five bases vs. Pirates

QUOTABLE
"I thought we were going to get to him. He was effectively wild, I think is what it was. And we just couldn't hit the pitches we were supposed to hit. We were ahead in counts and just couldn't capitalize." -- Mackanin, on Glasnow and the Phillies stranding 14 men on base

Video: PHI@PIT: Harrison handles tough throw to turn two

UPON FURTHER REVIEW
In the second inning, Galvis appeared to ground out to Jaso, who picked up the ball that rolled by Glasnow before tossing it to the pitcher at first. The call was overturned after a review, as replay showed Glasnow's foot never touched the bag. Galvis reached on a missed catch error by Glasnow, assist to Jaso.

Video: PHI@PIT: Galvis safe at first after Phils challenge

The Pirates challenged an out call against Cervelli at first base in the eighth inning. The call on the field was overturned, as Cervelli had made it to first before Blanco's throw reached first baseman Tommy Joseph.

Video: PHI@PIT: Cervelli awarded first after call overturned

In the ninth, the Phillies challenged whether a ball Hernandez hit down the left-field line was fair or foul, but the foul ball call stood after review.

Video: PHI@PIT: Phillies challenge foul ball, call stands

WHAT'S NEXT
Phillies: Right-hander Vince Velasquez (8-2, 3.15 ERA) will start for the Phillies as they try to clinch their series with the Pirates on Sunday at 1:35 p.m. ET.

Pirates: The Bucs, who have lost just one of their past seven series, turn to right-hander Jameson Taillon (2-1, 3.44) in an effort to make it 6-1-1 in series over the past month.

Watch every out-of-market regular-season game live on MLB.TV.

Sarah K. Spencer is a reporter for MLB.com based in Pittsburgh.

Chris Adamski is a contributor to MLB.com and covered the Pirates on Saturday.