Monday, April 21, 2008

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Matty Mo was beat down again. In four innings, he gave up 9 hits, including two that went yard, and 8 runs. And it took him 99 pitches to get that far. His ERA is now 9.15, opponents are batting .380 against him, and his record is 0-3.

But let's not lay all the blame at Morris' feet. The early Pirate performance has been a true team effort.

The starting pitchers not named Snell are usually gone by the fifth inning, and people are wondering about Gorzo's shoulder.

The tattered and overworked bullpen can count on Matt Capps and John Grabow to hold the fort, and after them John Russell has to cross his fingers and hope for a clean inning or two.

The offense consists of Nate McLouth (19 games and counting), Xavier Nady, and Doumit/Paulino. Three starters are hitting below the Mendoza line. The Bucs have committed 25 errors.

Pittsburgh is 6 games back already, although the Reds and Astros are piling up losses almost as quickly as the Pirates. That qualifies as the good news.

Tonight makes six losses in a row. Watching these Pirates in April is more painful than filling out tax forms. It's looking more and more like the only excitement in store for Buc fans is waiting to see what Nady, Bay, and Marte bring the team when they go.

On the Pirate front: After optimistic projections yesterday, the Pirate management is now saying that Jack Wilson will be out at least a week longer than hoped and won't be back until early May.

The Associated Press reported OF Nate McLouth was caught stealing for the fourth time this season (actually, it's in his big league career - he's 36 of 40 stealing bases in three years) against the Cubs on Sunday.

They noted that he has yet to be thrown out by a catcher. All McLouth's caught stealings were because of pick-offs.

Pittsburgh has lost its' last three games by 13-1, 13-6, and 10-4 tallies.

Rob Biertempfel of the Tribune Review reported that last time the Pirates surrendered double-digit runs in three straight games was June 13-15, 1994, against Montreal - losses of 10-2, 12-7 and 13-2.
The losing pitchers were Denny Neagle, Zane Smith and Paul Wagner. Hey, records are meant to be broken.

On the minor league front: The independent Newark Bears signed 1B Randall Simon of sausage-swatting fame to a one-year contract. He joins ex-Bucs Bobby Hill and Ruben Mateo on the Jersey roster.

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