It started early. Austin Jackson led off with a single, Jeff Kobernus tripled and Miguel Cabrera bounced out, and after three batters it was 2-0 Detroit. Gomez gave up two more tallies in the third frame. He walked Jackson, and a batter later Cabrera dropped one into the right field seats to make it 4-0.
Drew Smyly worked three perfect frames for Motown. The Pirate pitching was equally stellar after Gomez left. Mike Zagurski, Mark Melancon, Jared Hughes, Vin Mazzaro and Ryan Reid pitched perfect ball over the last five frames, but the Pirate bats never broke loose.
Starling Marte got the first Bucco hit in the fourth when he rolled a bunt down the third base line so well that there wasn't even a play made on him. The next batter, Alex Presley, lined a ball to second; Marte was doubled off first. Seems to be a lot of that going around this spring.
Pittsburgh tried again in the seventh. Marte led off with a single and was bunted to second by Presley (no, we don't know why either; it's like trying to figure out why God created stink bugs). Russell Martin and Gaby Sanchez walked to juice the bases against Melvin Mercedes. Jerry Sands came up with a big hopper to short, and the 6-4-3 DP killed the inning.
They had another good shot in the eighth. Anderson Hernandez and Jared Goedert led off with singles, and an error let in a run while leaving runners at second and third with no outs. But a pair of whiffs and a pop out calmed those seas.
The Bucs mustered a Sanchez knock in the ninth and left him on first as the Pirates went down the drain for the sixth straight time.
- After a week of games, Gaby Sanchez (.556), Anderson Hernandez (.500), Starling Marte (.417) and Jared Goedert (.400) are off to hot starts.