Friday, August 7, 2015

Pedro's 10th Inning Walk Off Gives Bucs 5-4 Win

Great night, great matchup with the yard packed with bodies early. Jimmy Rollins ruined it right away by dropping a soft jam shot into left. No prob; Gerrit got a grounder up the middle to S-Rod, who used a glove flip to get it JHK to start the 6-4-3 DP. A whiff brought up the Buccos. Clayton Kershaw's scoreless streak of 37 IP lasted one pitch; Gregory banged it into the stands to make it 1-0. A one-walk Cutch walk caused a small stir, quickly quieted by A-Ram's around-the-horn DP.

Cole Train punched out the first pair of Dodgers, the Yasiel Puig's hooking liner to left stayed up long enough for Starling to corral. Kershaw sat down the Pirates with a whiff, liner and tapper.

With one gone in the third, Joc Pederson doubled high off the Clemente Wall. An out later, Rollins walked on four pitches and stole second without a throw. Howie Kendricks shot one to third; A-Ram dove to make the play, threw off his knees, and the wide toss took Morse off the base; two runs scored. Not exactly a sterling start tonight for Mr. Ramirez, even tho it was graciously ruled a single.

The Bucs were as about fundamental as a whiffle ball team in their half. Stew dropped a bunt single to open, but Cole popped up trying to bunt him over. El Coffee banged a single to right; Puig hit the cutoff, stopping Stew, and Polanco who took a hard turn, was gunned down by Rollins trying to get back to first; a straight to the bag slide would have done the trick, but Gregory tried to reached around the side of the base and was tagged a hand short of being safe. A pop up ended a frustrating inning; Kershaw is getting some help in the early going on both sides of the ball, and he's not a guy you want to let off the hook.

Cole came out with smoke coming out his ears and lost Andre Ethier, but he was erased on a chopper that S-Rod turned into a tag-and-toss DP; Ethier made no effort to extend the play, thank you. Puig whiffed to end the frame. The Pirates answered with three straight singles to load the bases. Michael Morse then lined out to first in a good news, bad news scenerio; if the liner gets into the corner, Bucs are running all day, but if Adrian Gonzalez was awake, he had JHK doubled off first. S-Rod whiffed, fouling a hung curve on the prior pitch. But Stew got a nerve wracking RBI walk. He went up 3-0, was victim of a gimme strike well down, took another borderline pitch that went Kershaw's way, then finally one was far enough off the plate for ball four, tying the game.

With one gone, Pederson walked and Kershaw was clipped in the ankle. Rollins lifted a fly to left; Marte came a long way, but it ticked off his mitt and LA was up 3-2 before the fire was out. He made amends; with an out, Starling was banged in the back shoulder by a heater, then came around when Cutch doubled to the left center bullpen. he went to third on a short wild pitch, going. stopping and going again, beating the rap by slidinh underneath a high tag. The infield came in and A-Ram slapped one into right; it's 4-3 after five.

The Big Bull ended a long night with a laser to right (photo Dave Arrigo/Pirates)
Cole had a 1-2-3 sixth. The Kid hit for Gerrit with two down and singled, followed by a Gregory fly to right. In came Joakim Soria, as The Kid remained in the game and S-Rod went to first. He got the first two outs, but Carl Crawford hit a soft roller to third, but was awarded first as his gloved ticked Stew's mitt. It cost the tying run as Rollins drilled a 3-2 pitch off the right center wall, missing a homer by inches, to tie the game before A-Ram made a nice stop on Kendrick's bullet to end the frame. Juan Nicasio took the hill; the two aces were both gone after six. The Pirates went down in order, with Cutch and A-Ram going down swinging.

Tony Watson climbed the hill and got a whiff, walk and pair of pops. Nicosia gave up an infield, broken bat knock to JHK. Ishy grabbed a bat, and lefty Luis Avilon jogged in to face him. Fran then hit for Ishy and dropped a 3-2 pitch into left. S-Rod wanted to bunt, but was walked to load 'em. In business? Nah. LA brought the infield in and routine one hoppers by Stew and Walker (bad at-bat; he didn't see a strike) turned into forces at home. Gregory's tapper to first ended the frame.

Mark the Shark was next up and had an easy ninth inning. Jim Johnson toed the rubber and walked Cutch with an out; A-Ram bounced into a DP on the next pitch. Antonio Bastardo answered the phone for the tenth. A one out double by Kendricks, a two out walk to Scott Van Slyke and a wild pitch set up the Dodgers, but AB got Yasmani Grandal swinging.

Johnson lost JHK on four pitches and Fran bounced one into left. S-Rod bunted to the left side; the LA 3B'man inexplicably never left the bag, and it went for a bases-loading single. Lefty JP Howell came in to face pinch hitter Pedro; that emptied the Pittsburgh bench. But hey, who needs a bench? Against a five man infield, Petey rocketed a 2-2 pitch over 1B Gonzalez's head into right, and the Bucs finally cashed in to take a 5-4 walk off win.

Certainly not the type of game we anticipated; both Gerrit and Clayton struggled. And the Bucs shot them selves in the foot most of the night. But in the end, every win is well played. Tomorrow afternoon, Frankie takes on Mat Latos.

  • Big time Cutch - he was on base four times tonight with a pair of hits and two walks. Gregory, A-Ram, JHK and late sub Fran also banged out a pair of hits.
  • El_Coffee is the first Bucco to hit leadoff dingers in back-to-back games since Nate McLouth on 4/27 & 4/29 2008.
  • Tonight's attendance was 39,404, the 16th sellout of the season and second largest crowd behind Opening Day.
  • With a day off after this series, the Bucs decided to skip JA Happ's start against the Cards. He was in the bullpen tonight.
  • The Pirates sent Vance Worley to Indy as he cleared waivers.
  • Deolis Guerra has been unclaimed - ends up he has a bum knee, so the Indians returned him. The Bucs put him on the 15-day DL and DFA'ed Wilfredo Boscan.
  • Travis Snider was DFA'ed by the Orioles; he fell to earth in July, hitting just .088.

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