- July 21 - The Pirates snapped a three game losing streak with a 3-2 win over the Reds at GABP. Jeff Locke gave up one hit over six, but allowed a run on back-to-back walks, a bunt, and a two-out wild pitch. Mark Melancon gave up the other score, giving up a ground ball single sandwiched around a pair of walks with no outs, but gladly gave up the tally in exchange for a Joey Votto DP ball. The Pirates staff only surrendered three hits to Cincinnati, but seven walks gave the Reds plenty of scoring opportunities. The Buccos scored on a Garrett Jones solo homer and RBI knocks by Jordy Mercer and Jose Tabata.
- July 22 - Jason Grilli was on the cover of Sports Illustrated, the poster boy for Ben Reiter’s story “The Playoff Bound Pirates and Their Sharknado Bullpen.” It was purely coincidental that he was injured pitching the same day, put on the DL, and out of action until September 3rd.
- July 24 - Francisco Liriano and Stephen Strasberg hooked up in a 1-0 battle, with the Pirates up, going into the ninth. Both starters turned the game over to the bullpens, and that’s when the fun started. The Bucs put up a three spot on Drew Storen, with Mike McKenry’s two run knock being the big blow, and Washington came back at Nationals Park to score a pair off Justin Wilson until Jason Grilli came to the rescue in a 4-2 Pirate win. The only score in the first eight frames came on a second inning homer by Pedro Alvarez.
- July 27 - Mike McKenry showed why MLB catchers are a different breed of cat. He caught the final three frames of a 7-4 win against Miami at Marlins Park after tearing the lateral meniscus in his left knee during a slide, an injury that required season-ending surgery three days later. It was hard to tell, as the reserve catcher, who soldiered through the game because starting catcher Russell Martin had tweaked his knee the previous night, went 4-for-5. The Fort was the battery mate of Charlie Morton, who took home the win after a save by Mark Melancon.
- July 30 - The Pirates swept a doubleheader from the Cards by 2-1 and 6-0 scores at PNC Park to vault over them into first place in the NL Central. The opener went 11 innings, with the winning run scoring after Alex Presley’s apparent DP ball deflected off pitcher Kevin Siegrist’s glove and into left to plate Russ Martin. Vin Mazzaro got the win. The key blow in the nitecap was Andrew McCutchen’s two-run homer that bounced off Matt Holliday’s glove and into the second row of seats in left. Rookie Brandon Cumpton went seven frames for the win, tossing three hit ball. C Tony Sanchez took his MLB bow behind the dish and became one of seven Pirates to call a shutout in his first game; the last was Jason Kendall in 1996.
- July 31 - The Pirates took their fourth straight game of the series over St. Louis with a 5-4 win at PNC Park. With Card ace Adam Wainwright on the hill, Pittsburgh rallied three times from early deficits to tie the game 4-4 in the fifth. The score stayed that way until the bottom of the eighth. Neil Walker opened with a single and tagged to second after Pedro Alvarez’s drive to left died in the corner for the second out. Russell Martin turned on a slider and lined it into short left center for the game winner. The Pirate bullpen tossed five scoreless innings in the victory, with Tony Watson getting the win and Mark Melancon earning the save.
- August 7 - Petrina McCutchen, Andrew’s mom, sang the National Anthem before the Miami Marlins’ game at PNC Park. Her son responded with a 2-for-3 night with a walk and a homer, and so did the team, as they won 4-2 behind Charlie Morton, Tony Watson and Mark Melacon.
- August 9 - It wasn’t a very good day for the Bucs, who gave up nine runs in the first two innings on the way to a 10-1 drubbing at the hands of the Colorado Rockies at Coors Field. But it did plump up the resume of utilityman Josh Harrison, who came in the eighth with two out and two runners aboard to get the last out, using his 60-something MPH heat to coax a fly out from Corey Dickerson. Harrison related to Bill Brink of the Post Gazette that Clint Hurdle told him “All right, I never thought I would have to have this talk with you here on the mound. Go get them."
- August 17 - The film “Baseball’s Last Hero: 21 Clemente Stories” premiered at the Strand Theater in Zelienople. The movie was written by West View native Richard Rossi. It had its initial showing in Hollywood, but Rossi edited the film into its final version for the hometown viewing.
- August 27 - Looking to strengthen the roster down the stretch, the Pirates pulled off a waiver deal with the NY Mets for OF Marlon Byrd, C John Buck and $250K for minor league IF Dilson Herrera and a player to be named later (RHP Victor Black).
- August 28 - Newly acquired Marlon Byrd hit a homer and tallied three RBI in his first game with the Bucs to ice Pittsburgh’s 7-1 win over the Milwaukee Brewers at PNC Park, with Charlie Morton getting the victory. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, Byrd was the third Pirate player to hit a home run and have at least three RBI in his first game with the team after playing for another MLB team earlier in the season. Derrek Lee hit two dingers and had three RBI on August 1st, 2011 after being traded from the Orioles and Shawon Dunston hit two long balls and drove in four runs on September 2nd, 1997 after being acquired from the Cubs.
- August 30 - The Pirates defeated the St. Louis Cards 5-0 at PNC Park behind Francisco Liriano’s two hitter and a 3-for-4 night by Garrett Jones, who had four RBI and was a triple short of the cycle. The HR was #100 of his career. Pittsburgh moved back into a Central Division tie for first with the Redbirds in front of a sellout crowd of 38,036.
Saturday, October 12, 2013
Summer To Remember Part 3 - All Star Break Through August
Pittsburgh was hot in late July and early August, but cooled down as the weather heated up. Still, they went into September with a one game lead in the NL Central.