Now Commenting On:

{"event":["spring_training" ] }

McCutchen hits second home run of spring

Pirates' offense racks up nine runs, 16 hits, but pitching roughed up in loss

McCutchen hits second home run of spring play video for McCutchen hits second home run of spring

LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. -- Freddie Freeman and Andrelton Simmons each hit a pair of home runs, and the Braves' potent offense once again erupted in Wednesday afternoon's 18-9 win over the Pirates at Champion Stadium.

The Braves, who hit five home runs, scored 17 runs in their last game, a win over the Phillies on Monday.

Freeman highlighted his 4-for-4 performance with a pair of two-run shots. Simmons hit a three-run blast, a solo shot and doubled in his first Grapefruit League game since leaving for the World Baseball Classic on Feb. 23.

Freeman finished a triple shy of the cycle and leads the Grapefruit League with seven home runs. The Braves first baseman hit an opposite-field home run off the left-center field scoreboard in the second inning and then capped his productive afternoon by sending a Vin Mazzaro pitch over the right-field wall in the fifth.

Simmons, who helped the Netherlands reach the Classic semifinals, drilled a solo home run off Pirates starter Kyle McPherson in the fourth, and his three-run shot came off Mazzaro in the fifth. The Braves shortstop started a five-run first inning with a double off the center-field wall.

Braves starting pitcher Mike Minor capped the scoring in the first with an RBI double, but experienced his shakiest outing of the spring. He allowed five runs on 10 hits and three walks and lasted only four innings. He recorded five strikeouts -- three against Starling Marte -- and benefited from two Pirates being tagged out at the plate.

The Pirates pulled within 7-5 with a four-run third inning highlighted by Andrew McCutchen's two-run home run. Michael McKenry and McPherson capped the inning's scoring with consecutive RBI singles.

McKenry drove in three runs, Alex Presley drove in two and Brandon Inge went 2-for-5.

Up Next: Left-hander Jonathan Sanchez, a non-roster invitee, will start against the Orioles in a 7:05 p.m. ET game at Ed Smith Stadium in Sarasota on Thursday. Sanchez is 1-1, with a 7.56 ERA in five appearances (two starts) in Grapefruit League play. The game is available live on Gameday Audio.

Mark Bowman is a reporter for MLB.com. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

{"event":["spring_training" ] }
{"event":["spring_training" ] }
Boys and Girls Club of America

©2014 MLBAM, LP. All rights reserved.

The following are trademarks or service marks of Major League Baseball entities and may be used only with permission of Major League Baseball Properties, Inc. or the relevant Major League Baseball entity: Major League, Major League Baseball, MLB, the silhouetted batter logo, World Series, National League, American League, Division Series, League Championship Series, All-Star Game, and the names, nicknames, logos, uniform designs, color combinations, and slogans designating the Major League Baseball clubs and entities, and their respective mascots, events and exhibitions. Use of the Website signifies your agreement to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy (updated May 24, 2013).

View MLB.com in English | En Español