CINCINNATI – Ben Gamel homered, Ke'Bryan Hayes had three hits and the Pittsburgh Pirates dampened the Cincinnati Reds' fading postseason hopes with a 6-2 win Tuesday night.
Gamel hit his eighth home run in the fourth inning to erase the Reds' early lead in the fourth. Hayes singled to score Hoy Park, and Cole Tucker sent Hayes home with a single.
Mitch Keller (5-11) pitched out of trouble with the aid of two double plays to hold off the Reds, who are chasing the streaking St. Louis Cardinals for the second NL wild card. The Reds trailed by three games entering Tuesday. Cincinnati has 10 games left to catch St. Louis.
The Reds failed to get a hit in key situations, scoring on a double play with runners at the corner and TJ Friedl's bases loaded sacrifice fly.
They loaded the bases with no outs in the seventh, but Nick Castellanos and Joey Votto popped out and Nick Mears struck out Kyle Farmer looking. Farmer had three hits, but Cincinnati stranded 11 baserunners.
Keller matched his season high with 5 2/3 innings, allowing two runs on seven hits. He won for the first time since Aug. 20.
Mahle (12-6) was relieved after 4 1/3 innings, giving up three runs on six hits.
The Pirates scored three runs off Michael Lorenzen in the eighth.
The Reds have not won a series since completing a four-game sweep of the Miami Marlins on Aug. 22. They need a win in Wednesday's series finale to avoid losing nine straight series.
Pirates: IF/OF Michael Chavis continues a rehab assignment with Indianapolis. He is 6 for 15 with four RBIs in four games, recovering from a strained right elbow.
Reds: Manager David Bell told reporters that LHP Wade Miley has been dealing with a stiff neck. Miley is being monitored by trainers and expected to make his next start.
Reds RHP Luis Castilo (8-15, 4.08 ERA) makes his 32nd start of the season Wednesday in the series finale. Pittsburgh hasn't named a starter.