Thursday, August 13, 2009

August 1: Pittsburgh's Drop-Deadline

Let's see...the Pirates got three hits, the Rockies got ten runs. Even for another August loss, this 10-1 groaner was ugly.

Paul Maholm gave up seven of the runs, two in the first frame, in 6-1/3 innings of work. He surrendered eleven hits, two that went yard and four more that were doubles. Matt Capps gave up three more in the final inning.

The fielding fit right in with the pitching and hitting. Andy LaRoche's wild throw in the sixth led to one Rox run.

The next inning, Jason Jaramillo tried to pick off a runner at first. Steve Pearce didn't get to the bag, and the throw went into right field. Not that it made much difference. It was closer to the first base coach than the sack. The error scored a run, and Maholm gave up a homer four pitches later. It took him 118 pitches to get 19 outs.

Capps faced six batters in the eighth; four got knocks, three of them doubles. Colorado ended up with 15 hits, eight for extra bases. Hey, it could have been worse. At least the Pirates didn't walk anyone.

Maholm, who was touted to be ready for a breakout season after a strong April start, is now 6-7 with a 4.93 ERA. He's 0-3 in his last six starts and has allowed at least four runs in each of his past five starts. Today was his second consecutive two-homer game.

Capps, the closer, has a 6.57 ERA, and has surrendered five runs in his last two outings, covering 2/3 of an inning, since striking out four D-Backs on August 6th.

The Bucs are 2-10 this month. That 7-21 finish in August of 2008 is looking better and better. The Pirates sure know how to put the dead in post-deadline play; maybe they should lobby for a four-month season.

Now Pittsburgh is off to meet the Cubbies; has the pitching matchups listed here. Saturday afternoon's game features Zach Duke going against Tom Gorzelanny, a pair of lefties joined at the hip in the Pirate system until last month.

-- Tim Dierkes has a list of the worst closers in baseball for Roto Authority. Lotta Matt Capps in the stats.

-- Adam Guttridge of The Hardball Times applies some science to the Freddy Sanchez - Tim Alderson deal, and he likes how the Pirates came out.

-- Chuck Finder of the Post Gazette reports that the Pirates have signed 10th-round pick Joey Schoenfeld for $195,000, according to Baseball America.

Schoenfeld is a 6-foot-2, 200-pound prep catcher from Garden Grove, California, and a Tony Gwynn recruit at San Diego State University. Scouts consider him an upside prospect who could move to a corner infield or outfield position.

-- Jason Stark of ESPN writes that
"Adam LaRoche might be more than a two-month rental in Atlanta after all. By trading Casey Kotchman, whom they could have controlled beyond this year, the Braves left themselves without a first baseman - at least until phenom Freddie Freeman arrives, probably in 2011. So don't be surprised to see them attempt to bring back LaRoche next year on a short-term deal."

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