Saturday, June 7, 2014

Bring On the Goo Goo Dolls; Bucs Hit Sour Note In 9-3 Loss

Ho-kay. Jean Segura got to first against Edinson Volquez when Jordy Mercer muffed his grounder. He went to second when Ike Davis forgot to catch Volquez's pickoff throw, and then to third when Ike's throw went astray. Two hitters later, a sac fly made it 1-0. One run, no hits, three Pirate errors. After a pair of fly outs, Cutch drew a walk off Matt Garza, but Ike couldn't make amends, flying out to short center.

A-Ram, who can do no wrong against his old club, opened the second with a bloop into right.  Eddie took control after that, picking up a pair of swinging whiffs and getting Lyle Overbay on an opposite field fly to left. With one gone, Pedro banged a double to right center. That was followed by a four pitch walk to JT, but Jordy and Edinson both grounded out to strand the ducks.

Volquez got a couple of weak comebackers to start the third and then K'ed Braun swinging; Eddie's been more than sharp over the first three frames. After Josh flew out to the track, The Kid lined a single and Cutch legged out an infield knock. Ike's dribbler moved them up a base, and a walk to Russ jammed the sacks for Pedro. Garza came inside with a fastball on his first pitch, and El Toro dropped a soft flare into right to bring home a pair, making it 2-1 Bucs after three innings.

Jonathan Lucroy fought Volquez for ten pitches to open the fourth, and punched a 3-2 curve into center.  An out later, he hit Aramis Ramirez. Khris Davis cashed in when he was served a first pitch a hung curve, turned on it and bounced the ball over the wall in the LF corner for a ground rule double. After falling behind Scooter Gennett 2-0, he intentionally walked him to face Overbay, who singled in a pair. Garza bunted him over to put Brewers at second and third. Volquez got Segura, but the Brew Crew got the lead back at 4-2. In the Buc half, Segura went into the hole to take away a hit from Jordy, and Garza got the next pair easily.

Volquez was on his game again in the fifth, tossing a clean frame. With two down, Ike drew a walk. Martin had a 3-1 green light, and bounced a fastball to short to end the frame.

With an out in the sixth, Davis reached second on a Pedro throwing error, the Bucs' fourth of the afternoon. A wild pitch moved him to third. Volquez got Gennett to pop out, then walked Overbay intentionally. Garza grounded out as Edinson dodged a bullet. Pedro opened with a walk and JT laid down a bunt single, with El Toro going to third on A-Ram's misthrow. Mercer banged into a 6-4-3 DP, again on a ball banged into the SS hole, El Toro scoring. Travis Snider pinch hit and singled, but Josh popped out to end the music.

Jared Hughes took the ball in the seventh to face the top of the Milwaukee order. With two gone, Lucroy bounced a single to right; Hughes came back with his second K of the frame, a three-pitcher to Gomez. Rob Wooten climbed the hill for the Brewers, and The Kid greeted him with a single. Cutch rolled over on a curve and rolled into a 6-4-3 DP, then Ike whiffed. The Bucs aren't doing much very well today; it's kinda surprising they're still in the game. But they wouldn't be for long.

Justin Wilson got the call for the eighth. He whiffed A-Ram, then walked Davis and Gennett. Wilson had pinch hitter Mark Reynolds 0-2, ran the count full and then hit him to load the bases for Ricky Weeks, followed by the top of the order. He almost got out of it when Weeks hit a hopper to short, but Mercer's throw was off his back foot and weak; the Bucs settled for a force and the Brew Crew had an insurance run. They piled on when Weeks stole second and Segura bled an infield single to plate another. Wilson was yanked - he had some bad mojo going, but the walks were his black cats. Jeanmar came in and gave up a two run double to Braun as the onslaught continued. He got the last out, but the pen turned a one run game into a 8-3 blowout.

Will Smith got the call and walked Russ. No problem; Pedro K'ed and JT hit into an around-the-horn DP. Gomez opened the ninth with a tapper back to Jeanmar; he threw it away for a single and error, with Carlos ending up at third. Irving Falu's sac fly brought him home. Davis singled sharply off Pedro's mitt, but there was no more damage. Brandon Kintzler came on for the mop up. Josh doubled with two outs, but The Kid flew out to deep right to end a poor show.

Volquez pitched OK; one bad inning, triggered by Lucroy's 10 pitch at-bat, seemed to do him in. Walks and defensive plays left in the field with three DPs on the offensive side added in are what lost this game. Even with five errors, the Pirates gave up just two unearned runs, but four Brewers that were walked or plunked led to runs. We can only hope the Goo Goo Dolls put on a better performance.

Charlie Morton is scheduled to face Yovani Gallardo tomorrow afternoon. Unless it's Jeff Locke; we'll see how that plays out. (EDIT - it was announced after the game that Locke will start tomorrow and Morton on Monday).
  • Josh Harrison extended his hitting streak to 10 games, matching his career high.
  • Ike Davis in the last two weeks: .135/.267/.216 with a .483 OPS. He has one extra base hit and more walks (7) than hits (5).
  • Today's attendance of 38,525 was the fourth sellout of the season
  • Let the speculation begin: Jeff Locke's start was skipped at Indy last night, perhaps as a prelude to adjusting the rotation. 
  • Tyler Thornburg was placed on the 15-day DL with right elbow soreness; that should make Ron Roenicke proud that he left him in to face 12 batters in one inning last night. RHP Mike Fiers will replace him.
  • Two guys the Bucs passed on in the draft were signed by the Brewers: SS Jacob Gatewood agreed to $1.83 M, with a slot allotment of $1,384,900, and OF'er Monte Harrison agreed to terms for $1.8M; his slot was $1,100,300.

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