SAN DIEGO -- This version of Joey Lucchesi could win a lot of games for the San Diego Padres one day.
He was pitch-efficient. He did not walk a batter for the first time season. He completed seven innings for the second time in his career.
He just needed a bit more help.
Lucchesi paid dearly for a fourth-inning mistake to Bryan Reynolds, a two-run homer that accounted for all of the Pirates' runs off him in a 5-3 loss to the Pittsburgh Pirates on Friday night in front of 28,913 at Petco Park.
The 25-year-old left-hander struck out six, scattered five hits and threw 52 of his 77 pitches for strikes in his best start since throwing five shutout innings at the Arizona Diamondbacks in his second start of the year.
Lucchesi might have gone even longer had the Padres scratched together more off Jordan Lyles than Franmil Reyes' first-inning homer. The former Padres pitcher struck out a career-high 12 batters over seven innings, including rookie Austin Allen as a pinch-hitter for Lucchesi for the final out in the bottom of the seventh inning.
Lyles allowed only four other hits after Reyes' first-inning homer upped his total to 14, tied for the third most in the NL. Their only other runs crossed the plate in the ninth when Felipe Vazquez gave up a leadoff double to Wil Myers and a second-deck homer to Ty France before getting the next three hitters without incident.
Lucchesi, meanwhile, didn't allow a hit until Kevin Newman's third-inning single with two outs. The second hit he surrendered was Josh Bell's one-out single in the fourth inning, a hot shot that scooted under Eric Hosmer's glove as he waved at it.
Three pitches later, Lucchesi left a 2-0 90 mph fastball over the middle of the plate and Reynolds drove in over the wall in center for a 2-1 lead. Lucchesi turned in three more scoreless innings before handing the ball over to his bullpen.
A third run was charged to Brad Wieck when Melky Cabrera doubled in the eighth off Phil Maton and two more scored in the ninth off right-hander Gerardo Reyes before Green called on Matt Wisler to fetch the final two outs.
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