CINCINNATI – Mike Leake doubled and hit a two-run homer Tuesday night, ending Gerrit Cole’s winning streak and leading the Cincinnati Reds to a 7-5 victory over the Pittsburgh Pirates that completed two days full of homers and delays.
First, the NL Central rivals completed a game that was suspended in the sixth inning because of rain the previous night. Andrew McCutchen doubled and came around on Russell Martin’s single in the seventh inning, giving the Pirates an 8-7 win.
Leake (2-1) gave up three runs and five hits in 6 2/3 innings for a split. The right-hander has won his last four starts against the Pirates. Jonathan Broxton escaped a two-on threat in the ninth while getting his first save.
Leake doubled and scored in the third. He hit his third career homer in the sixth off Cole (2-1), who had won his last six starts. Joey Votto had four hits.
The NL Central rivals put on a record-setting show Monday night before the game was suspended after six innings because of rain. They combined for 10 homers in those six innings, the most for a game in Great American Ball Park’s 12 seasons.
“You just keep playing,” Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said. “It’s something we take pride in. Things we can control, we try and stay on top of those. Things that are out of our control, you’ve got to let it go.”
A few hundred fans were bundled in the stands when the game resumed with the temperature at 39 degrees. It was 66 degrees for the first pitch the previous evening.
McCutchen doubled off Sam LeCure (0-1) one out after play resumed and came around on a wild pitch and Martin’s single up the middle, only the second run of the game that didn’t come by way of a homer. McCutchen also singled in the ninth for his third hit of the game.
The Pirates improved to 6-2 in one-run games, while the Reds fell to 2-6.
“A big swing of the bat from Martin to drive in the plus-one, so it’s another one-run game,” Hurdle said.
Bryan Morris (2-0) gave up Devin Mesoraco’s tying solo homer in the sixth inning on Monday night, but was still the pitcher of record. Jason Grilli pitched the ninth for his fourth save in five chances.
The Pirates had a double, three singles and a walk after play resumed. The Reds managed only a single and a walk.
“Last night, we go six innings and score 14 runs,” Reds manager Bryan Price said. “It was a tale of two completely different games.”
The teams wore their customary uniforms for the completion of the suspended game, and then switched to commemorative No. 42 Jackie Robinson jerseys for the other game, which started 5 minutes later than originally scheduled.
The series opener will be remembered more for what happened during a downpour. Many of the 10 combined homers on Monday were hit during a heavy rain — players were surprised that the balls cleared the walls under those conditions. Plus, both teams had struggled to score runs in the opening weeks of the season, ranking in the bottom three in the NL.
Those six innings rank among the wildest in major league history.
“It was a Twilight Zone game, to be honest with you,” Price said.
Pittsburgh had three sets of back-to-back homers, only the third time that’s happened in major league history, according to STATS. The other two times: Cincinnati against the Braves in 1956, and Boston against the Yankees in 1977.
Neil Walker and Gaby Sanchez went back-to-back twice, only the second time that’s happened in Pirates history. Toby Atwell and Jerry Lynch also went back-to-back twice against the Reds on April 27, 1954, according to STATS.
Pittsburgh hit six homers – all solo shots – and the Reds had four, all with two outs. The teams had a combined 17 hits before the suspension, 10 of them homers.
The teams finished two homers shy of the major league record for combined homers in a game. ... Pittsburgh’s six homers were one shy of the club record. The six solo homers were one shy of the major league record for one team. The 1977 Red Sox and 2006 Braves hit seven solo homers in a game, according to STATS and SABR. ... Reds starter Homer Bailey gave up four homers, a career high. ... The Pirates have hit 14 homers in their last three games at Great American. They hit six during an 8-3 win on Sept. 28 that clinched home-field advantage for the NL wild card playoff, a 6-2 win over Cincinnati at PNC Park.