PITTSBURGH (AP) — Oneil Cruz collected his 12th RBI in 13 games this season to help Pittsburgh Pirates bounce back from a blowout loss with a 7-4 win over the Milwaukee Brewers on Saturday night.
The 23-year-old prospect put the Pirates up 4-1 with two outs in the fourth on a 392-foot solo blast to right with a 112.3 mph exit velocity that chased Brewers starter Aaron Ashby.
It was Cruz's third homer of the year. He has at least one RBI in eight games since being recalled from Triple-A Indianapolis on June 20, and at least one in each of his first nine games at PNC Park.
Cruz also used his glove to help Pirates right-hander Bryse Wilson (1-4) pick up his first win since Sept. 18, 2021. The shortstop stretched every bit of his 6-foot-7 frame to snag a line drive from Christian Yelich with two men in scoring position before trotting to third, finishing a double play to end the second inning.
Wilson (1-4) was called up from Triple-A Indianapolis to make the start, and allowed two runs on eight hits with four strikeouts over six innings.
Pittsburgh has taken two of three in the four-game set, despite losing 19-2 on Friday.
Pirates closer David Bednar pitched the ninth for his 12th save, giving up one walk with one strikeout after surrendering six runs his previous 4 1/3 innings.
Ashby (1-6) allowed four runs on five hits with six strikeouts and one walk in his return from the 15-day injured list with left forearm inflammation.
Yelich sent a sinker from Wilson 416 feet over the Clemente Wall in right, his eighth home run, to cut it to 4-2 in the fifth.
A two-out, two-run single from Daniel Vogelbach followed by an RBI double from Diego Castillo into the left-centerfield notch extended Pittsburgh’s lead to 7-2 in the bottom half.
Kolten Wong later hit his sixth home run of the year to make it 7-3, and a double down the right-field line from Jace Peterson cut the Brewers' deficit to three later in the inning.
Pirates: LHP Aaron Fletcher was optioned to Indianapolis with Wilson being recalled. … LHP Anthony Banda was traded to the Toronto Blue Jays for cash considerations. He was designated for assignment on June 27.
Brewers: RHP Trevor Kelley was optioned to Triple-A Nashville.
Brewers OF Hunter Renfroe (calf) is eligible to come off the 10-day injured list Sunday, but is not expected to be available.
RHP José Quintana (1-4, 3.43 ERA) will take the mound for the Pirates in the series finale opposite Brewers RHP Brandon Woodruff (6-3, 4.44). Quintana last won May 9 despite allowing fewer than four earned runs in seven of nine starts since. Woodruff has won three of his past four starts, giving up five earned runs in 20 innings.
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Wes Crosby, The Associated Press