HEADLINE

Pirates look to finally beat Diamondbacks at home

Field Level Media

April 22, 2019 at 5:01 am.

Things tend to run hot and cold when the Arizona Diamondbacks visit PNC Park, as they will Monday to open a four-game series against the Pittsburgh Pirates.

The Pirates have lost six straight games at home to the Diamondbacks at PNC Park after winning six in a row there.

Overall, both teams enter the series in a pretty good groove despite one-run losses Sunday.

Pittsburgh climbed to first in the National League at 12-6 before having its five-game winning streak snapped Sunday in a 3-2 loss to San Francisco.

The Diamondbacks have won five of seven and are 6-3 in their past nine road games after a 2-1 loss to the Cubs Sunday. Ten of their 22 games have been decided by one run (4-6).

Arizona right-hander Zack Godley (1-1, 6.26 ERA) is scheduled to face Pittsburgh righty Joe Musgrove (1-1, 0.81 ERA) Monday.

Tuesday, Godley pitched into the seventh for the first time, giving up five hits and two runs, with four strikeouts and two walks, but did not get a decision against Atlanta as the Diamondbacks won in extra innings. At one point, he retired 12 in a row.

Performance under pressure made his outing and might have set him up going into Monday’s start.

He gave up the two runs in the second, and Atlanta had two runners on with no outs, but Godley struck out opposing starter Kevin Gausman in a bunt situation, then got Ozzie Albies to hit into a double play.

“That was huge,” Godley said. “It’s a big relief to end the inning with only two runs scored. I came out for the next inning, and I obviously felt really good going into that inning. Getting the first guy to ground out the next inning, and just kind of going from there, everything rolled in together. It was nice.”

Arizona catcher Caleb Joseph saw that as Godley at his best.

“That’s a big point of emphasis for him and with him — when you do get in trouble, try to lock it down and minimize damage,” Joseph said.

Godley is 1-0 with a 3.86 ERA in three career appearances against the Pirates, two of them starts.

If Musgrove’s ERA looks miniscule, it makes sense. He leads the National League in that stat — two earned runs in 22 2/3 innings — among pitchers who qualify. Which means he has bragging rights over fellow Pirates starter Jordan Lyles, who hasn’t pitched enough for his 0.53 ERA to count.

His last time out, Musgrove got a no-decision despite allowing two runs and six hits in seven innings Tuesday against Detroit because Pittsburgh gave up the tying run in the ninth before winning in extra innings. He struck out six and walked one that night.

“I felt good out there. I was comfortable in the zone,” Musgrove said. “I was having early success with off-speed pitches in the zone.”

Musgrove is 0-1 with a 5.56 ERA in three career games, two of them starts.

The Pirates are dealing with several injuries — 10 players are on the injured list — but catcher Elias Diaz came off the IL Sunday after dealing with a virus since training camp, and manager Clint Hurdle said right fielder Gregory Polanco could be activated during the homestand, setting up his season debut, after season-ending left shoulder surgery last year.

For Arizona, first baseman Christian Walker was not in the lineup Sunday because of a minor hip pointer but is expected to play Monday, according to manager Torey Lovullo.