(SportsNetwork.com) - Pittsburgh Pirates left-hander Francisco Liriano is still searching for that elusive first win of the season and hopes that will come Wednesday in the continuation of a three-game series against the Milwaukee Brewers at Miller Park.
One year after going 16-8 in 26 starts, Liriano has an 0-3 record and a 4.64 earned run average in eight outings this season and has posted four straight no-decisions -- all Pittsburgh wins. Liriano allowed three runs in five innings of a 6-4 triumph versus St. Louis on Friday and has been reached for seven runs in his last two appearances.
Liriano lost to Milwaukee on April 11, when he was reached for four runs in six innings of a 4-2 setback. In 12 career meetings (11 starts) with the Brewers, Liriano owns a 6-4 mark and a 4.40 ERA.
Pirates starter Gerrit Cole took the mound in Tuesday's 5-2 loss and allowed three runs in 5 2/3 innings to fall to 3-3.
"I had some opportunities to finish some guys off, and I didn't," Cole said. "I had some opportunities to locate the fastball better, and I didn't. Those are the things you try to work on over the next five days and try to maintain your delivery no matter the situation presents."
Neil Walker homered and Jose Tabata finished with three hits for the Pirates, who have dropped two.
The Pirates will visit the New York Yankees for three games next.
Milwaukee aims for a fourth straight win Wednesday and has prevailed in each of the last three games after losing three in a row and seven of nine.
Jonathan Lucroy drove in two runs and was one of five players with two hits. Brewers starting pitcher Marco Estrada threw six innings of one-run ball for the win and Francisco Rodriguez nailed down his league-leading 16th save in the ninth inning.
Ryan Braun was activated off the disabled list and went 0-for-2 in six innings. While Braun returned, third baseman Aramis Ramirez landed on the DL with a hamstring strain.
"It's nice to have one of them in there," Brewers manager Ron Roenicke said of his sluggers. "When both of them are out, the interesting part is being there before games trying to figure out a lineup."
The Brewers are 4-3 on a nine-game homestand and will send Wily Peralta to the mound Wednesday. Peralta has lost two of his last three appearances and pitched well in a 3-2 defeat versus Arizona on May 7, when he gave up two runs and 11 hits, including a home run, in six innings.
Peralta fell to 4-2 in seven starts and has a 2.17 ERA. He has lasted at least six innings in each of his last six outings and defeated Pittsburgh on April 11 in a 4-2 triumph. Peralta was touched for two runs -- one earned --in seven innings and has won both of his starts against the Pirates.
Milwaukee is 7-1 against Pittsburgh this season with a 4-0 mark at home.