PITTSBURGH --- Pinch hitter Adam Frazier’s first career home run, a leadoff shot in the seventh inning off fellow rookie Edubray Ramos, lifted the Pittsburgh Pirates to a 5-4 victory over the Phillies on Sunday afternoon at PNC Park.
It was also the first home run allowed by Ramos (1-1) in 14 career relief appearances.
The Pirates tied it at 4-4 an inning earlier when Matt Joyce hit a two-run home run off starter Vince Velasquez.
The Phillies wound up losing two of three in the series after rookie right-hander Zach Eflin pitched a three-hit shutout on Friday night. They are 3-7 since the All-Star break to fall 10 games under .500 at 45-55.
Cesar Hernandez had three hits for the Phillies while Andres Blanco and Odubel Herrera hit solo home runs off Pirates rookie right-hander Jameson Taillon.
Pirates left fielder Starling Marte also had three hits. Neftali Feliz (4-0) pitched a scoreless seventh inning for the win and Mark Melancon worked a 1-2-3 ninth for his 30th save.
Blanco suffered a fractured left index finger in the fifth inning when the veteran utility infielder was spiked on the hand by Pirates right fielder Gregory Polanco in a play at third base. He is expected to be placed on the 15-day disabled list Monday (see story).
Blanco was making his second straight start at third in place of Maikel Franco, who was out with a sore left wrist after being hit by a pitch Friday from Pirates right-hander Gerrit Cole.
Franco took over at third for Blanco, who is hitting .271 with four homers in 75 games this season.
Meanwhile, catcher Cameron Rupp was not in the lineup after being hit in the left ear flap of his batting helmet on Saturday by a pitch from Pirates rookie right-hander Tyler Glasnow. Carlos Ruiz started behind the plate.
Rupp passed Major League Baseball’s concussion protocol both Saturday and Sunday and will likely play Monday night in the opener of a three-game series against the Marlins at Miami.
The game was delayed for one hour and 32 minutes in the bottom of the eighth inning.
Starting pitching report
Velasquez had his worst of his five starts since coming off the disabled list June 26, though he did not factor in the decision. He allowed four runs and seven hits in six innings while walking four and striking out five.
Velasquez threw 107 pitches, 64 for strikes.
In his first four outings after begin activated, he was 3-0 with a 1.88 ERA to raise his record to 8-2.
At the plate
Hernandez was moved to the leadoff spot of the batting order to replace slumping right fielder Peter Bourjos and responded by going 3 for 5 with a triple.
Herrera’s home run led off the sixth and was his 11th of the season, giving the Phillies a short-lived 4-2 lead. Herrera went 7 for 13 in the series after going 4 for 41 in his previous 11 games.
First baseman Ryan Howard went 2 for 3, lifting his batting average to .166, before being pinch hit for in the eighth inning.
Left fielder Cody Asche was 0 for 4 with three strikeouts, the last coming to end the eighth inning with two runners on base and the Phillies trailing by a run.
The Phillies open a three-game series against the Marlins on Monday night at Miami.
Monday night --- RHP Jeremy Hellickson (7-7, 3.84) vs. RHP Jarred Cosart (0-1, 7.98)
Tuesday night --- RHP Jerad Eickhoff (6-11, 3.98) vs. RHP Tom Koehler (7-8, 4.42)
Wednesday afternoon --- RHP Zach Eflin (3-3, 3.40) vs. LHP Adam Conley (6-5, 3.58)