Friday, August 28, 2015

El Coffee Leads Pirates to 5-3 Win Over Rox

Well, the Rox got the word on Frankie; make him throw a strike. He got through the first, but not without walking a pair. The Bucs were getting their first look at Jon Gray. After a pair of routine outs, Cutch singled and stole second; it was big when JHK worked the count and dinked an RBI single into right.

A couple of K's in the second made it clear Liriano knew what Colorado was up to. The Piates went down 1-2-3. Frankie was touched for a two-out double in the third, but escaped unscathed. The Bucs ran some more two-out offense at Gray. Gregory was at second with a single and stolen base with one down. Cutch walked with two away, and JHK came through again, doubling to right center; one run scored as Carlos Gonzalez cut off the ball nicely and got it quickly, freezing Cutch at third. It paid off; The Kid walked but Fran whiffed.

It was a clean fourth for Frankie. Jordy singled with an out and was caught stealing easily with Francisco up; can't tell if it was a blown sign or due to Frankie pulling back on a bunt attempt, with Jordy hung out to dry. Gray's sixth whiff ended the frame; his high heat is his K pitch.

The seven hitter, Kyle Parker, drew a leadoff walk, and it would haunt Liriano. A wild pitch moved him to second and a sac fly to third. Gray went down swinging, but Jose Reyes caught jcaught a hung change and lined it off the bottom of the foul pole to tie the game.

Gregory did it all tonight (photo USA Today)
Not for long; Gregory doubled, barely beating the rap at second as Gonzalez made a nice play off the wall. A wild pitch moved him to third, and Marte's liner to left was deep enough to chase him home. Cutch's infield single to the SS hole put a fork in Gray, who was approaching 90 pitches, beyond his usual 75 pitch cut-off. Christian Bergman came in, and gave up a hard shot to Jung-Ho, but right at third to start a 5-4-3 DP to end the frame.

But again, the lead was short lived when Gonzalez, who is having himself a night, crushed a high heater deep into the RC seats ; fortunately, The Kid had made a leaoing grab of a liner prior to CarGo's at-bat. Nick Hundley singled and took a big turn; Gregory gunned the ball to Walker, and his relay nailed Hundley trying to get back. Fran singled with an out, and with two gone, Jordy's can of corn pop was dropped by DJ Mahieu. Michael Morse hit for Frankie and worked a walk after falling behind 0-2. Gregory rifled a shot to right (the exit speed was 113 MPH); CarGo, who's been a one man wrecking crew, made a diving catch to close the inning.

Joakim Soria tossed a clean seventh, as did the Rox Jimbo Diaz. Tony Watson took the ball. Tony Watson came in and Reyes dropped a single into center. He was bunted to second and stole third when Fran had the ball pop out of his glove. Nolan Arenado hit a soft liner to right; Gregory gloved it and threw out a tagging Reyes in no contest to keep the score even.

Scott Oberg toed the rubber. After a K, he walked Fran and Pedro, and the wheels turned. S-Rod came in to run for El Toro and A-Ram hit. His ball to right was corralled, but moved Fran to third. Josh then grabbed a stick, and with a big hole on the right side shot a single through to put the Bucs up. Gregory then drilled a 3-2 pitch into center; with the runners off on the pitch, an insurance tally was on the board.

The Shark worked a 1-2-3 ninth, and it was another good night at the office.

It was worth the price of admission to watch the right fielders tonight. El Coffee and CarGo both put on great shows. And again, the bullpen made the difference; Colorado's has struggled all year while the Bucs late inning trio shut down the Rockies. That deep bench came through too; Clint loves a full toy box.

Jay Happ takes on Chris Rusin tomorrow night.

  • El Coffee was 3-for-5 (he's hitting .356 this month) with a double, scored twice, drove in a run, stole a base and had two outfield assists, the first Bucco OF'er to pick off a pair in the same game since Josh in 2013.
  • Cutch has had multi-hit outings in six of his last eight games; he has 40 on the year.
  • All five Pirate runs came in after two outs. As Josh said on the post game interview "We use 'em all."
  • With Gregory's two assists, the Pirate outfield now has 30 on the year, tops in MLB.
  • The attendance was 32,607. 
  • Indy's Chris Volstad went 2-for-4, drove in four runs & pitched seven innings of one-run ball to power an 8-1 win over Louisville

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