Bomba Squad defused, bullpen implodes against Pirates

The Twins' bats continued to be quiet in Sunday's loss to Pittsburgh.
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Nelson Cruz

With their bats silent, the Minnesota Twins lost for the 11th time in the past 13 games on Sunday, falling to the Pittsburgh Pirates by a score of 6-2.

The Pirates got off to a fast start on Sunday, jumping on starter Matt Shoemaker for a pair of first-inning runs. Although the Twins got a run back on a Byron Buxton single, Minnesota couldn't get anything going against Pittsburgh starter Wil Crowe.

Crowe came into the game allowing five home runs in nine major league innings but held the Twins to one run and four singles in four innings of work.

The effort wasted a solid outing from Shoemaker, who allowed two runs over 5.1 innings. The Twins turned to their bullpen and the Pirates took advantage with three runs in the seventh inning.

After Kevin Newman and Cody Frazier delivered RBI singles, Bryan Reynolds added an RBI double to give Pittsburgh a 5-1 lead. 

Gregory Polanco hit a solo home run off Jorge Alcala in the top of the eighth inning before Nelson Cruz cut into the lead with a solo home run in the bottom half of the eighth.

Cruz's home run was a rare bright spot for the Twins, who scored six runs over the three-game series with the Pirates. With a 1-2-3 ninth inning from David Besnar, Pittsburgh finished the game and took two of three games from the Twins.

The Twins (7-13) will look to awaken their bats as they start a three-game series with the Cleveland Indians on Monday.

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